Bags packed, graduation behind him, Shane hopped in the car with no regrets. His father at the wheel, mother in the passenger seat, and his sister sitting too close to him. Being a hot and humid day in August, he began to sweat in the back of the sedan. His sister, Lucy leaned her head against his Bob Dylan t-shirt, and wrapped her hands around his wrist. She then put her headphones on and fell asleep. Shane sighed and relaxed in his seat, counting down the hours until they were there. The sedan was an old ’86 and had ugly burgundy cloth with fine rips lining down the sides, the driver’s seat worn and flattened out. The air conditioning was shot, and the backseat windows didn’t roll down. Shane couldn’t do much but think in the heat. He thought of college, what rushing might be like. He had a pretty good idea. Once they reached the town, the traffic began. For being such a small town, move-in day was packed. By now Lucy’s hair stuck to her face with sweat, her feet uncomfortable in her sneakers. The 4-hour car drive had never felt longer. The sedan stuck out like a sore thumb. His dad parked the car as soon as he found a space. Shane and his dad dragged every suitcase and every heavy box out of the back, and staggered along to the dorm room. Inside, the room was about 2 feet wider than the old sedan. His mattress had a giant stain on the end and the small mirror above his desk had a small crack in the middle. It didn’t matter to Shane. He was excited for this chapter. He had thought ahead to this moment, when his mom and dad would say goodbye and he would start to live his life as an adult. Lucy went for a quick hug, kissing him on the cheek. His father stood up and opened his arms like he always does, hugging him and slipping a 20 in his back pocket. His mother arose from her chair, her mascara slightly running down her face. She choked up and hugged him as tight as she could, let all her sobs loose. Meanwhile, he couldn’t wait for them all to leave. When they were gone, Shane sat on his bed. He sat there for 2 whole hours at the mirror, the little crack forming in it. He felt a tear roll down his cheek and over his lips. Then he reached for his cellphone and called home.
New Kid on The Block
October 25, 2011