I woke this morning feeling like a fairy tale princess in my big fluffy down bed. The sun had been shining in the windshield for hours, and it was hot enough that I’d mostly pushed the blankets off in my sleep. The blankets were behind me, stuffed from bed to ceiling along the wall, and the feather bed under me. I love my bed. I leaned over to look down at Bro, sleeping on the denim duvet cover I got for a dollar in a thrift store and folded up to make his bed. He has been sleeping with the pink pig that Katies dog, Mutt, gave him ever since we left Katies. It’s very cute.
Bro looked up at me, yawned, and stepped up onto the little box that holds my pressure cooker and some other kitchen stuff so that he could smell my morning breath. He loves morning breath. I scootched back to make room for him and he crawled into our fairy tale bed with me. Gotta have morning snuggles. I think we fell asleep for a little while, and when I woke up Bro was chasing something in his sleep.
“Hey,” I told him. “I think it’s morning.”
Morning? He jumped out of bed and ran in his crate. He has free access to his food so he can eat whenever he’s hungry, but he still likes it when I mix up his food and some water and give it to him in his crate in the morning. I slide out of bed into the floor space he’s vacated and fold into the turned around passenger seat. The view shocks me. Eight hours ago I went to sleep in a quiet parking lot somewhere between a gas station and a strip mall, but while I was sleeping a whole crew of guys set up a bunch of yellow caution tape in the parking spot next to me, opened up holes in the ground, and started doing some kind of non-noisy mechanics. One of them looks up at me and waves. I smile back.
After I feed Bro I flip my hair over and brush it. Fifty strokes with the boar hair brush, to move the oils from my scalp down the hairs and make it all shiny and healthy. I put henna in my hair the other day. Overall it still looks mostly the same color, but when I brush it all these sparkly reds pop in and out. I love it. The ends are still dry, so I put some rosemary olive oil on them. Rosemary helps hair not break. I turn around in the seat and lean against the crate and bed to look in the mirror on the back of the visor. Happy hair! I dig out my toothbrush and take my morning tinctures. These little things make me so happy.
Poor Bro has been cooped up all night and all day before, and so have I. I put his town leash on him and we decide to go explore this town, whatever town it is. I grab a handful of jerky for breakfast from the back of the van and put an apple in my pocket. It doesn’t seem to be much of a town: just a gas station, a pizza shop, a hallmark store, sub shop, and several garages and industrial things. No one is outside, and no one sees me and Bro skipping through their town.
Back at the van I wave at the gas guys again, and realize I should change out of the clothes I slept in. I do it all sneaky in the back, but really anyone who looked twice would see. People never look twice. A woman and a man walk by, their baby riding on the guys shoulders, and they’re all laughing. They don’t even look once. I scoop some nettles into my infusion jar and go into the gas station for hot water. In the gas station I think I haven’t had yogurt in a while, so I get some. Last summer I got big old tubs of it and ate a layer every day with berries that I poured over it.
When I come out I see that Bro is leaning out the window towards one of the gas guys, who is baby talking to him over the yellow tape. Bro is being all friendly and licking the air in the guys direction, but then the guy steps over the tape and Bro looks back at the van and decides he should guard it. Good boy.
“Hey, your dog has two eyes,” the guys says. He means two different colored eyes. I smile and say something nice. When I’m on the road I’m nice to everyone.
I start straightening things up in the van. Things fall and move around and need re-adjusted, you know. When I pick the dulcimer up to put it in the bed for the day I remember the song I’ve just learned the chords for and can’t help playing it a couple times. I love C chords. All of them. I want to sing C forever.
Next I pick up the book I was reading while I was waiting in construction yesterday from where it fell on the floor. Milton Erickson’s teaching tales. Suddenly I remember that I was in the middle of one when the cars started moving again.
Then I catch sight of the time on my phone. I’ve been awake for three hours and have gone zero miles. People always ask what I do with all my time, and the thing is I don’t do a lot. I walk, I eat, I read, I play dulcimer, I write, I play with plants, I check my email obsessively. Somehow this all takes a lot of time.