Thursday, October 15, 2009
Very late on Tuesday--actually Wednesday morning around 12:30 a.m.--headlights come up my driveway. Never a good sign. So I put on some pants (What?! You don't lounge around in your underwear after hours in the middle of nowhere?! Get over yourself!) and grab a gun. I slam on the porch lights so the intruder can see I'm in full possession of both pants and gun, which I firmly believe are important things to have in one's possession during any late night backwoods encounter. Yay! Pants! Yay! Gun!
Dogs are going nuts--but it's sort of a joyous nuts, especially on Max's part.
A long, deep drawl floats out of the intruder's truck window, "Hey, you got a couch in there for me?"
It's Friend Scott! Completely unexpected visit. I was sort of expecting him to come Wednesday day, but his schedule is sort of crazy and I don't always expect him when he says he's driving up. So this was really great. There's not a single thing about Scott that makes me uncomfortable--from his six-foot-nine frame to his languid Carolina drawl, everything Scott reminds me of home. I really miss having him live just up the road. I realize Scott is sort of my muse, in a way. I never lack for stories when Scott is around.
We sit up talking until four-ish or so. Scott tortured Max with a laser pointer--any tool that can distract ADD-Dog is welcome. We talk about many things, but there's this story he tells about him climbing out of The Red Claptrap of Death and this little man telling him, "You a twelve foot man in a two foot car!"
We get up at the crack of the afternoon--Scott swears he tried to wake me up but couldn't--and we take off driving around in his new truck. He hasn't had a chance to play with the 4WD so we grab a few corn dogs and waters at the Citgo and head up to Waterville, taking the road that goes by the AT Outpost--the back-back-back way into Grassy Fork. We natter the whole way, rummage through an abandoned house, see and chase veritable herds of turkeys. There's a long conversation about how come turkeys are so hard to hunt but if we tried real hard we could run one over with the truck. How come?
We end up driving all the way to the top of Snowbird to the FAA facility. My brother, the airline pilot, has told me about this--what it is for. It's a way for pilots to navigate without instruments. They have places like this all over the country. He's only seen it from the air. It's an unimpressive little building with a round roof and a big cone on top. The locals have many fanciful theories for what it's for. A "secret military installation," they'll say. Homeland security. And sometimes there is military activity related to this little place.
It's a long, bumpy ride to the top, and like a Roman road, it goes straight up. We've been living in the cloud cover for the past few days--it's like living in the rain rather than having it fall. On Snowbird, the fog is thick and the wind is high. You can see ribbons of cloud streaming by--so solid you could grab them, maybe stick your tongue out to taste them. It's sort of a shame since on a clear day, I suspect we could see to Clingman's Dome or the skyline of K-town from up there. It's 4623 feet above sea level. Scott checks his cell phone, then spreads out his arms like a giant bird and drinks the wind.
On the way down, we have to stop the truck to let the brakes cool.
Anyway, we visited a few of his friends and then he was off, back to Greenville. Usually my posts have some structure to them. Usually I nail my endings on my blog posts. Not gonna do that here. I just really miss my big friend. He's a great big irresponsible man-child, he redecorates my fucking house if he's here for more than a few hours, he places things on shelves out of my reach, he often lies (and badly), he gossips like an old woman, he's always in some sort of trouble, he's gayer than a tree full of monkeys on nitrous oxide--and completely irreplaceable. I miss him.
Labels: Friend Scott