19.9.09

Red Light District

With the roar of the interstate drowning out my headphones, I clambered over the safety barrier, to retreat to the ditch while I walked.  In the dark, I stumbled over rough, unfinished drainage canals, and the wet undergrowth slapped at my legs.  I trudged on for a while before realizing I was never going to get any closer to my destination, and that walking across an interstate is a much stupider prospect than walking across a highway.  Defeated, I re-oriented myself for the return trip. There, beyond some trees, I saw the white lights of a parking lot. From there, I could just cut along the back of the commercial district.  Simple. 

To reach the trees, I traversed a broad plain, clear-cut in order to put up the massive power lines now hanging over my head.  Then, I had to fight my way through the brush. Branches tripped me, thorns tore at me, and dead wood sprang at me like a lash. Finally, I saw the parking lot. On the other side of a ten-foot chain link and barbed wire fence.

It was at this point that GWAR started playing on my headphones, as I fought my way back through the thorns and tripwires. Then, under the power lines, I stepped knee-deep into a... well, honestly, I don't even have finish the sentence. "Knee deep" very rarely carries a positive connotation, after all. Nobody ever steps knee-deep into strawberry shortcake.

Anyway, I try again at another point along the interstate, and this time I manage to climb a hill so steep that no one worried about putting up a ten-foot fence. Here, five feet was sufficient. I managed to vault that, and dragged myself to the hotel about half an hour later, utterly defeated by the suburbs of Baltimore.

The next day, I got in the rental car and drove to my intended destination - a strip mall which I had seen from my hotel window, half a mile away. 

America doesn't have a love affair with the car - it has a domination fetish. 
 

2 comments:

Adam said...

I've heard coworkers mention the same thing about some place in Mississippi (the name of which escapes me). Apparently there is no way to cross the street in some given portion of downtown without getting in your car and driving. Blech!

Laina said...

Apparently your facebook profile doesn't exist. At least Facebook is telling me so.

Listening to the Hip and thinking of you! See you next year!

About The Author

My photo

Canadian explorer. Chemist by training, biologist by nature. Long-time supporter and participant in National Novel Writing Month. Known as "Aquadeo" in most Internet circles. Also known as "that guy with the pants" to people who have seen me in certain pants.