Just about all of 2012 is in my rear-view mirror now. It joins well over 50 others, most of them so far back they are lost in the mist and fog of life. My car moves forward at its full legal pace: 24 Hours Per Day, just like the markers say. (You do not want to be pulled over by the causality cops for violating the reality limit. The fines are truly Lovecraftian.)
Up ahead I see the border markers for 2013. Less than six hours away, so there’s no need for more stops. It’s an easy drive, and there’s something very poignant about watching the last mile markers roll past. This is country passed through once, never visited again.
It’s a time to look back in my mirror for some last glimpses of the path traveled.
That big casino we just passed, the one with all the lights and a ton of cars parked outside. It’s the Freshly Pressed Palace, a popular place with guaranteed winners every day. People flock to that place from all over the world. I never imagined I’d get a chance to visit it so soon.
I understand it’s a chain franchise. You can encounter them at various places along The Path. Perhaps I’ll see one again up ahead; that would be fun. I had a blast visiting this one.
I have to squint a little to see past the glare of the palace. It’s so close and big, but there’s a whole year back there beyond the casino.
Again. Second time in ten years. A guy could get a complex or something.
Fortunately the chute opened, so I didn’t go splat, but where I landed… [shakes head] I dunno. I really hate to whine about job when having a job is no small potatoes. (Actually, I rather like small potatoes. You know those little red ones they do with the skins still on them? Love those!)
Let’s just say there have been some big challenges to face, and there still are. Things might be looking up a little. From the landing spot to here is a big chuck of that Ohtwelve country back there, a good third of the width.
And it’s been largely an empty desert (which is no dessert). If my task was to see the sights and bring my crews along to see those sights… Well, let’s just say we didn’t see much. Oh, sure, I went and saw what I could, but moving everyone else along has proven to be quite a challenge. They spend a great deal of time talking about seeing the sights, but very little actually doing it.
That said, the last few miles, ever since that Turkey farm we passed (the one after the pumpkin patch), things have started to move along. When I left to go see Santa’s Village, it looked like—that when I returned from that side trip—things might actually start moving along. So I do have some possible positive outlook up ahead in Ohthirteen country.
Not sure it’ll be enough to prevent me from taking that off-ramp that’s just this side of halfway through the country. The country roads call to me; I’d like to get off this highway. I’ve been on this same interstate through nearly 33 countries! And the last few this road has passed through just haven’t been that much fun.
Ah, well, the country up ahead has roads and bridges unknown. I’ll travel them and cross them as I find them.
And one thing about being Gobsmacked: it had the effect of kick-starting this blog again, so small blessings. As I look back, that’s the most enjoyable part of the journey.
Dotted all along that part of the path I see people. (Living people; this isn’t a take on The Sixth Sense.) They’re the people I’ve met along the way. They’re people I’ve met online, so their outlines are fuzzy and they have those TV video horizontal lines as if they were some sort of hologram. Some are funny, some are serious. Some are young, some are old. All of them are interesting. (Some are interesting single women; that adds a nice spice to the chili.)
There are far more interesting bloggers to read than one can read, even if all one did is read! That too fuels a desire for more time to call my own.
Of course, this is the penultimate day of Chillaxmas. (It is also the Seventh Day of Christmas. Hope all went well with the swimming swans. At least the fowl are all in the rear-view mirror now as well!) I hope you’ve been chillin’ and relaxin’! Soon enough we must pay for all this fun with several holiday-free long winter months.
Yesterday (for no particular reason) was Eric Clapton day here at Con Carne, so that catalog got a go ’round in the iPod. Today it’s Fleetwood Mac day (again, no particular reason). You’ll remember I wrote about a country-rock group, Little Big Town, that loved Mac and had music somewhat reminiscent of them. Doing the research for the post I saw they had a new album, which I said I’d buy immediately.
Well, it wasn’t immediately, but it was soon, and the new album (Tornado) is good! As a fifth album, it’s more of the same, no real surprises. The group isn’t one to explore different musical territory, but they do explore the territory they use very nicely to my ear. If there has been any change to me, it’s that they seem to be more finding their own style (more country-rock) and sounding less like The Mac.
Anyway, I mention all that music as a lead in for this offering of New Year’s Eve music for you. There is a tune from each mentioned above (god, Mac, LBT). Actually, two in the last case.
[Funny thing is, I wrote the above before even looking for the links, which I assume are found below. I know what tunes I want, and I’m just assuming YouTube will provide. Says something about the online information era!]
Sure enough, here we go. Some fairly new material from an old hand in the game, Eric Clapton’s Born in Time from Pilgrim. This tune has all my favorite elements: strong rhythm, strong melody, a powerful bass line. That it features some Clapton guitar sweet enough to rip your heart out is just bonus.
Next up, following the theme of newish material by old masters, a tune I can’t play over and over (and over) again enough times. Again, great rhythm, melody and bass. The bonus this time is Buckingham’s guitar solo. (Sorry, Sugar, this one’s not by your hero.)
And finally a couple cuts off the new Little Big Town album, Tornado. The first is the title cut to keep the party energy going. The second is a sweet romantic country song to sing you to sleep.
Sleep well tonight my friends. Tomorrow’s a whole new year!