SOMNAMBULIST VISIONS by Brian Roper

Posted: August 11, 2007 in The Roper Files

Two months overdue, hundred-degrees temperatures are baking us in Texas. Mowed the yard a week ago after two weeks of almost-daily rain. The yard was over-grown and difficult to mow; at one point I thought I was going to drop from the humidity. Sweat burning my eyes, I stopped and went in the house. Left the mower in the middle of the yard. Maybe someone will steal it and I won’t have to finish the job. Lay down in the floor after guzzling several glasses of water with a fan in the floor blowing on my head. Close my eyes; try to think of palm trees, seagulls, beaches and rolling ocean waves.

Open my eyes. Oh shit, I’m still in Texas; so much for positive thinking. Pry my sweaty ass off the floor, go outside after drinking one more glass of water and knuckle down and finish the job. Unfortuantly, the mower is still there waiting for me. 

A week later my yard looks as if I’ve been harvesting hay. The wet spinach-like slime that oozed out of the mower last week has turned to golden clumps of dried grass. You can see the path I mowed in. There are long lines of dried grass looking kind of like giant lines of so much you-know-what out there. The yard would look better if I raked it up, but it’s too hot to screw with it right now. Truthfully, right now would probably be the best time to do it. It’s 5am. Problem is the sun isn’t up so I can see what I’m doing. And then when it does come up…you guessed it..it’s too damn hot to do it. 

Took an air-conditoning filter and some vintage food left-overs for a pre-dawn walk a few minutes ago to a certain dumpster up the street ( ” I knew it was wrong and I did it anyways; look at me, I’m a criminal.” ) While taking unwanted clutter for its little walk I encountered both a raccoon and a possum ( oh boy, fresh gizzards ) out foraging for food I guess. The only person I see driving around is the paper guy. 

It’s amazing how many other people are up; there are lights on up and down the street. The people around the corner are having a party that has apparently been going on all night; of course I wasn’t invited. But it’s Saturday morning; not like everyone has to get up and go to work. Yet there are lights on everywhere. How many of them are taking advantage of the pre-dawn temperatures? Or all they all up smoking “ice” ? ( I hope not )

 Myself, I went to bed fairly early last night. Too broke and too humid to do anything else. Woke up wanting a cup (or six) of coffee. Tossed and turned for about an hour and gave up. Got up, fed the cats, fixed a pot of coffee, and did the previous days dishes while it perked. Turn off that money-burning air conditioner for a few precious minutes at least and open up the place. No one out driving around; all I can hear is crickets and birds. The cafe down the street doesn’t open for another hour and a half. Agony! I’ll be standing there at 6:59am waiting for that deadbolt to turn and the “open” neon sign to light up, trust me.Walk outside with a cup of coffee; look around. I can hear party chatter around the corner and a low level of music. Dark and quiet otherwise. Just the way I like it.

BR

August 11 2007

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