Lost on the Road to Los Suenos, Chapter One

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I made it. I’ve finally gotten to the point in my life after years of hard work and denial of self satisfaction that I’ve amassed just enough money to retire, living meagerly until I die…as long as that happens some time in the next 90 days. And with the way I feel right at this time, that really doesn’t sound so bad.

Fuck.

Life isn’t easy when you are a washed up never was been semi-nationally recognized author of psychological self help and star of short lived mid afternoon talk show. But you have to get through; keep going with the hand life has dealt you… and that’s how I find myself lost somewhere deep in the mountain forests of Idaho.

“I don’t know how you ended up here” ,I said to myself. “But boy howdy you really stepped in a steamy pile this time!”

Bleary eyed from more than 20 hours behind the wheel of a purloined late 70’s luxury sedan – complete with “rusty road view” floor panels that make watching the miles fly away beneath your feet a true delight – I give the orange needle hanging just below the big “E” a thump with my finger as the engine begins to sputter.

Fuck.

The lights flicker as the dying landshark gives a shuddering cough before leaving me in near total darkness. See the forest for the trees? Can’t see my hand in front of my face. Not much for it. I can’t magically make a can of gas appear out of thin air and it’s not likely that there will be many good samaritans in the middle of nowhere this time of night.

Boonesville. Nada city, population me.

I elbow the door open with a groan and step out into the chilly night. It’s the middle of July but it’s always cold at night when you’re this high up in the mountains. Nothing but a whole bunch of nothing in either direction and a whole helluvalotta trees.

Looking back the way I came, haven’t passed any signs of civilization for what seems like hours, so not sure if it’s even worth going back that way. Then again, who knows how far I am from anything else ahead…I guess that’s the problem with not knowing where in the hell you are.

Grabbing my bag from the backseat and slamming the door I pat my pockets, fumbling for a pack of smokes. The lightness of the little white box tells me it’s empty before I even pull it out. Crumbling it I toss it into the car’s open window along with the keys before starting down the road in the direction I was pointed. No sense in going back now, nothing but demons behind me, nothing but my inevitable fate in front of me anyway.

Fuck.

Regrets make shitty traveling companions, but when you’re alone it’s all you got. The chill of the night closes in around me with the darkness as I move away from the fading flashers of my abandoned road beast. Plenty of road in front of me to think about the one behind me that got me here; as the road stretches out ahead I think back on all the steps before this….

Posted on November 1st 2022 in Fiction, Lost on the Road to Los Suenos

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