They Told Me There Would Be Palm Trees...

April 9, 2010
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They told me there would be palm trees. I didn’t believe them but I went along with it. Earlier this year, I made a deal with some friends. The deal was that if they could come up with the money, I would go on an adventure with them. This adventure was to take place over spring break.

I am not the adventurous type. I rarely travel and have never been outside of Oklahoma. My friends, however, travel everywhere. They have much more money than I do, and love to travel to new places. They have been trying to get me to go on vacations with them for the past three years and I have always had to decline. I just couldn’t afford it – I honestly wasn’t all that interested anyway. I get terribly homesick when I am away. I will be the first to admit that I am a pretty boring person.

I can’t see anything through this stupid blindfold. All I see is the light of the sun barely showing through this blue scarf I have tied around my skull. It is all part of our deal; the one that I agreed to, thinking that it was a bluff and my friends wouldn’t actually go through with it. But, they did; and now I have the obligation to hold my end of the deal. At least the back seat is comfortable. They tell me it will be a long ride. I imagine it will seem even longer in a blindfold.

After a few hours of trying to beg over the sound of blaring road trip songs, I was allowed to remove the blindfold. We were on some highway in the middle of nowhere. I asked where we were and they refused to tell.

The sun was starting to set and I inquired as to what the plans were. I was slightly surprised – although I shouldn’t have been – when I was told that we didn’t have any plans at all.

Presently, we are pulling over on to a viewing area on the side of the lost highway. We have been on what appeared to me to be a mountain for the last twenty minutes. It is not really a mountain, but oh, what a view! We all pile out of the car and walk to the rail. It was as if we were looking at the edge of the world. I have never seen anything like it.

I had asked my friends prior to our trip if I should bring my camera. They told me that cameras are not allowed on their trips. I assumed it was because they might do things that might get them in trouble, but now I understand. They explained it to me as we peered off the edge of this plateau. They told me that pictures would do no justice for the sight. That it would be wrong to photograph this, because as beautiful as the picture may turn out, it can never be anywhere near as amazing as the sight itself.

It smells like grease. Not the grease you put on an axle of a car, but the grease you would eat in the form of a gas-station breakfast sandwich. That’s exactly what it is. My eyes are still closed from my nap until I feel a warm package slap me in the face. It appears to be morning and we are in the parking lot of a gas station. I have no idea where we are, other than the fact that we are somewhere in the U.S. Without thinking, I ask where we are and I immediately realize how dumb of a question that was. Both of my friends look back at me and my eyes look back and forth between my kidnappers of consent. We all knew the answer so nobody spoke.

At that point of our trip, I pretty much gave up on wanting to know where I was and wishing I were home. In a way that was very new to me, I was having fun. More than that, I was enjoying life. I wasn’t really thinking much about time, I didn’t care. It was nice. I told my friends how I was feeling and asked if we were ready to take off. We weren’t.

If I were to speak as sarcastically as possible, I would say that I am exactly where I want to be right now. But I’m a little too upset for sarcasm at the moment. I am in a gas station parking lot with a full tank of gas, but no way to use the gas. The car won’t start. Nobody here in this car has any mechanical abilities, and apparently, we don’t have any more money! The two greatest friends in the world lost the money bag! It’s going to be a long trip.

I asked again, thinking that I now had the right to know, where exactly we were going. “Wherever the road takes us.” was their answer. They didn’t know where we were going, nor did they even know exactly where we were at that time. All they knew was where they were trying to get away from. They promised me that it would all be worth it when it was all over.

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