Family and Relationships
The first transformer blew in the middle of the night. I opened my eyes to sparks flying over the ice-coated trees like fireworks. I made it to the window first, James close behind me, hopping awkwardly.
This is how it works when times are hard, and even when times are better, if we’re lucky. We women stand on the sidewalk and rest our backs against fences and lean into open car windows to see who needs what. In my twenty-five years living on this block, there have been recessions before, but this one has lasted the longest.
The names are all typed on the coach’s old typewriter which screws up the letter y so it looks more like w so you check again from the top looking for Dowle, Brian and then you check again reading up from the bottom this time just in case some weird thing happened because you wear thick spectacles and the gym door has this thick old shimmery glass and maybe the two densities of glass cancel each other out or something.
When I pull up to my house after work, my friend Eppie is standing in the middle of our shared driveway, clutching her green canvas shopping bag. Her face shows relief and then worry as I get out of my car. “I hate to bother you,” she says, “but would you mind taking me home?”
After six states, 1,300 miles, and almost twenty-four hours, the iron tang of blood and bleach still hadn’t blown out of my truck. And that’s saying something because since the fire I can’t hardly smell dog shit if I step in it.