Sunday, January 1, 2012

January 1st

I've been playing with my blog design- I still haven't gotten the colors right yet.

The Christmas tree is down, and in its place is the treadmill- and so the new year begins.

I am worn out- just worn right the heck out. I have had a great deal of blog material, but just no time or peace to pull my thoughts together.

Yesterday, I thought it was the last day of leave, and it wasn't. (I got my days mixed up.)

And then today, I thought it was the last day of leave, and guess what? It isn't.

Tomorrow is the last day.

"This is the leave that never ends," sang my husband, teasingly, "it just goes on and on, my friend!"

What a way to be serenaded in the morning, I tell you what.

Yesterday, we went ATV riding.

I offered to go, thinking it would be a nice, quiet little outing- or, as quiet as riding on a 4 wheeler enhanced by the deep throated rumble of a chrome exhaust could be- but, natually, it was not a nice, quiet outing.

Hundreds of the good citizens of Alabama and Georgia had also loaded up their four wheel drive machines and decided to tear up the tracks and get muddy on New Year's Eve.

There were mud slicks full of yellow, glossy water, shirtless country boys with rubber boots riding on stripped down lawn mowers, small children on tiny ATVs making circles in the parking lot and country girls with high heeled cowboy boots and string shirts watching the mayhem in the mudpit, where jacked up trucks were vying for glory in the churning waters.

The trails were full of entire families travelling in packs, radios strapped down to the handle bars and coolers on the back. Other families had set up camp on huge car trailers over looking the mud pit, a row of camp chairs unfolded, beer cans and sun glasses in use.

They all whooped and hollered when some poor fool in a monster truck got stuck. Huge sprays of mud were whirled up, glistening, in the air, as the massive tires spun in the muck.

Country boys stood on their hoods and watched, shouting advice in their slow, southern drawel, or sludged through the pit, high deep in mud, to inspect the engine and see what they could do.

It was something to see, alright. Keith was in his element; he was as excited as a school boy. His face lit up with joy as soon as he saw the crouds. I got soaked and mud splattered with the best of them, and ate French fries from the venders and wore Keith's ball cap.

We left around four in the afternoon- one can only imagine the mayhem that must have occured as evening fell across the mud slick trails in the back woods of Alabama, on New Year's Eve, under the headlights of a hundred ATVs, side by sides, razors, dune buggies and Jeeps.

That was yesterday.

Yesterday night, around eight o'clock, I couldn't stay up any longer. I took myself to bed to rest until midnight. I was woken up at 11:42 by an exuberant husband who made me the strongest screwdriver I have ever attempted to sip.

I sat down on the sofa, feeling about seventy years old, and was hit in the face by the barrage of New Year's mayhem at Time's Square, NYC. Even filtered through the television screen, I kept wanting to recoil.

The neighbors let of scores and scores of fireworks in the cul-de-sac. The bitter smoke drifted into through the loose windowsills and made me wonder if the house had caught on fire, as I stood in the dark kitchen, getting a glass of water.

This morning, the tarmac is scattered with tattered pieces of paper and ends of string. It's a cloudy, dull day and the sounds of the television seep around the edges of my ear phones.

Maybe the sun will come out tomorrow. In the meantime, a chorus from Les Miserables is echoing in my head:

"One more dawn, One more day, One day more!"

Oh dear, sweet Army-

Reclaim your errent soldier and native son, and put him to the honorable tasks for which you have so admirably fit him, and which is so suitable to his nature.

Return him to me in time for dinner.

Sincerely yours,

his loving spouse,

Mrs. Indiana

P.S. Please find enclosed all his gear.