For the last week the weathermen have been going crazy predicting the perfect storm conditions for today. I have my doubts, but I also do not have a storm shelter. If indeed a tornado is headed my way I race the 5 miles to the nearest public shelter or I head to the office.
The public shelter is a truck stop that is near I-40, we all hunker down in their showers (I hesitate to say smelly, unpleasant chemical odor is more appropriate.) and wait out the storm. I have done this on multiple occasions and have had some very interesting chats with cross country truckers.
One such conversations was with a couple from England that had come to the U.S. by Canada. They enjoyed the open road so much they decided to do it full time, alternating driving shifts as often as they could. They had been married for 30 years and been truck driving as a couple for the last 20 years. They truly seemed happy. They had owned a tattoo shop in Edinburgh Scotland before moving to Canada to join some friends on a business venture that fell through and left them stranded across the ocean, broke, and homeless/countryless.
We talked for a couple of hours and I wish I had thought to exchange email addresses or some other contact information. I think about them sometimes. In my darker thoughts on life, their happiness reminds me that not all is lost, no matter how lost you are.
Another time, I met a biker that was very upset at being stopped by this storm. He was trying to get home to Arizona and had had nothing but bad luck on his journey. When I said he was a biker that might not be the right term. This was his first long trip on a bike and he was clearly disillusioned with the road life. As we talked I learned that he had quit his job and bought a bike. He felt trapped in his life and needed something new, but I think this wasn’t what he wanted. Now he just wanted to go home and wash off the road dirt, sell the bike, and work a dead end job till he died. The grass is always greener…
Now with this pending weather event, that may or may not happen, I will probably will be sitting in a public shower with strangers, but it’s not as bad as it sounds. I think I might be looking forward to it.