I’ll be watching you

SEA

Today’s blog (though greatly delayed) is inspired by the Daily Prompt:

Your local electronics store has just started selling time machines, anywhere doors, and invisibility helmets. You can only afford one. Which of these do you buy, and why?

Being the dreamer I am, I’ve often thought about what it would be like to have a Time Machine so I could pick any era, step in, experience the culture, and talk to my literary heroes of days gone by. Here’s how I think it would go, meeting the Father of the Modern Detective Story, the master of bloody horror, the man of constant sorrow, Mr. Edgar Allan Poe.

Edgar, buddy, what’s the deal with your fixation on beautiful dead women? You’re a rock star, man. Live it! The ladies swoon when you recite your verses. Take a look around. There are a lot of living, breathing women here who would love to be the object of your affection, poetry, and prose. But no, you bust your rhymes about that crazy ghost chick Lenore. And what’s up with hearts hidden under floorboards and big-eyed men, draped in gossamer gowns? Dude, if my man Shemar (Derrick Morgan on Criminal Minds) profiled you, he’d peg you as a serial killer. You aren’t…are you? Hey, stay away from the sewer rats. They aren’t kittens, and I hear they’ll give you rabies.

Hmmm. I fear I’ve traveled back to 1990s rap while talking to an 1840s writer. Whatever.

Let’s get back to the prompt. I hold the record for the high school student who has been retained the longest number of years. Yep. I put on my cap and gown in the 80’s, turned my tassel, but still haven’t walked out these high school doors. It’s like permanent detention, Groundhog Day style. I wake up and live it again. Same places, different faces. I delight in kids but bear great disdain for being controlled by the State. Let me teach, let me teach, let me teach, Mr. Grinch. You’re a mean one, rotten to the “Core.”

If I can’t beat ’em, I’ll daydream them to death. An Anywhere Door would do the trick. Where would I go? What would I do?

Right now, I think I would like to go to the beach. I’m ready for a slow down. There is little to do at the beach other than to hang out with Mother Nature. Most people dig the sunlight My fair skin isn’t a fan, so I prefer the moonlight and the stars over the ocean. My Anywhere Door would take me to a place where all my five senses (maybe six) could kick in and kick back. Ah, the sweet sensation of a nautical getaway…

I want to watch the sun paint ribbons in the sky
Hear lap, lap swishes and the seagull’s cry
Sink my toes in the sand, be blanketed by sun
Taste fresh key lime pie, be tempted by rum
Smell briney mud and sea-salted air
And know without knowing answers to my prayers

People always tell me, girl, you live in the past. Embrace the moment. Stop wishing your life away. Bloom where you are planted. Okay, maybe I need to re-think my decisions.

What if the Time Machine breaks and I get stuck in the past? I don’t want to go back. I’ve worked hard to get where I am. What if the Anywhere Door leaves me stranded and I can’t put my feet on familiar ground? There are some good things about right now I don’t want to lose. Bad choices, bad choices, what’s a girl to do?

All I have left is the Invisibility Helmet. I can’t re-live the past or skip to my future. I need to focus on right now. I just need a little help seeing. If only I had better eyes, ones that could see everything I’m missing, then I would know whom I could really trust.

Don’t you think our eyes are opened when others don’t think we’re watching.

If I had an Invisibility Helmet, I could walk into your circle of friends and hear what you say about me when I’m not around. I could truly be like the Teacher with Eyes in the Back of Her Head. I could see who is cheating and who is not.

On a lighter note, I could walk into a Starbucks and walk away with all the Frappacinos. I could drive my car 160 mpg and never get a ticket. I could plant dreams in people’s minds by whispering in their ears as they fall asleep. I could spy on my cat and see what he really does when I’m not in the room.

So, I’ll take the Invisibility Helmet. I’m always watching, always. You may not realize it, but I’m watching you. Right now. I’m taking notes, just like Harriet the Spy. These notes, I’m sure, will make a great book. Someday.

I’m always looking for answers, always. Even if they’re right under my nose, I keep looking for what I want to see. The problem is I don’t see what I don’t want to see. Heck, maybe I’m already wearing the Invisibility Helmet. Instead of hiding me, it hides what I don’t want to acknowledge.

Everybody knows there are no calories in chocolate when you’re stressed out and on vacation. There are no dirty dishes or dirt on the floor when the sun begs you to leave the house. And then there are those other things we choose not to see….

Time Machine, Anywhere Door, or Invisibility Helmet? Choose your choice. What would it be?

 

 

 

 

 

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Moving to Rio de Janeiro

I can't believe I actually found myself on THIS road. I love road trips, but a SWITCHBACK? I survived. I can hear "Flirting with Disaster" playing in the background. This adventure had it's own serendipitous moment. I found snow in mid June. Dressed in shorts and flip flops, I was shocked to see a snow-capped mountain. It was so cold.

I can’t believe I actually found myself on THIS road when I traveled to Montana one summer. I love road trips, but a SWITCHBACK? I survived. I can hear “Flirting with Disaster” playing in the background. This adventure had it’s own serendipitous moment–I found snow in mid June. Dressed in shorts and flip flops, I ended up freezing my toes in the snow. I would never want to live atop the Beartooth, but I can add this journey to my travel log.

I moved to Rio de Janeiro Monday.

Not really, but my Facebook status says I live there now, and I blame this bald face lie on Zac Brown.

See, on Saturday, I went to Shelbyville to go treasure hunting, thrift store shopping, junkin’, whatever you want to call it. I needed some sunshine and get away, so I took the scenic route and surfed the radio waves for some easy, breezy road trip music.

Zac Brown’s “Jump Right In” popped up over and over—no disappointment to me. Every time I heard the whistle in the background, I thought of Carnival, and every time I thought of Carnival, I thought of Rio de Janiero.

Cool, right? If I couldn’t be there in person, at least I could be there in spirit.

Honestly, I don’t know where the Zac Brown Band is singing about. The song makes reference to Misty Mountain, and the only Misty Mountain(s) I can think are  those in Tolkien’s The Hobbit. The song also mentions an island lullaby and a Southern breeze, so Rio probably isn’t what he had in mind, but that’s where the song took me.

Isn’t it funny how a song can take you away? One song can change a world, or at least a small town.

Take for instance Winslow, Arizona, which appears in the Eagles’ song “Take It Easy,” written by Jackson Browne and Glenn Frey. Winslow almost dried up when the interstate took away business from Route 66, but when the song came out, everybody wanted to head to Winslow—and they still do. Winslow now has Standin’ On the Corner Park with a mural depicting the “Girl, my Lord, in a flatbed Ford.” Since then, the town has undergone its own “renaissance.” Voila!

I can’t not mention Memphis. Who hasn’t recorded a song about Memphis? In fact, it’s the most mentioned city in the world. According to the Memphis Rock and Soul Museum, the list is at 1074 songs and counting.

Take a look see at who has Memphis on the mind: Sheryl Crow, Paul Simon, Jerry Reed, Hank Williams, Jr., Chuck Berry, Darryl Worley, Trisha Yearwood, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Tanya Tucker, etc.

Of course, “Walking in Memphis” by Marc Cohn is my favorite. It’s always a serendipitous moment when I’m on Beale Street and hear it as I’m walking down the street.

Let’s see how up YOU are on your Song Travel Trivia. I’ll give you the artist and the title, and you chart the destination. (Answers are listed below the quiz.)

QUIZ

  1. “Turn the Page” by Bob Seager
  2. “I Wanna Talk about Me” by Toby Keith (one of the FIRST country rap songs)
  3. “Get Your Kicks on Route 66” by Perry Como
  4. “Sweet Baby James” by James Taylor
  5. “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” by Jim Croce
  6. “Folsom Prison Blues” by Johnny Cash
  7. “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” by The Band
  8. “City Don’t Sleep” by Maclemore
  9. “I Will Follow You into the Dark” by Death Cab for Cutie
  10. “Werewolves of London” by Warren Zevon (London is easy. Name another place mentioned in the song.)

ANSWERS

  1. Omaha
  2. Muncie, Indiana
  3. Albuquerque
  4. Boston
  5. Chicago
  6. Reno
  7. Richmond
  8. Seattle
  9. Calgary
  10. Soho

YOUR RANKING

10 Correct – Fantabulous. “Ramble On.” You’re obviously going somewhere.

7-9 Correct – Head out on the highway. You’re “Born to Be Wild.”

4-6 Correct – Not too shabby. Baby, you’re “Born to Run.”

1-3 Correct – Brush up on your travel trivia and get “On the Road Again.”

0 Correct – Not so good. You need a “Vacation.”