Wednesday, September 14, 2011

He bought it with the money he got from his chores

Wednesday, September 14, 2011
"You're very late tonight."

"I know. Traffic."

"They're in bed."

"Right."

"Are you okay?"

"I'm grand. Tired. Why?"

"You're sweating."

"I am?"

"Yeah, look."

"It was hot in the car. I should have opened a window. But you know, all the fumes."

"Are you upset about something?"

"Nah. Tired."

"How was work?"

"Work was fine. It's the commute. I can't..."

"Can't what?"

"Ah, nothing. It's just tiring is all."

Just getting out of town takes an age. I fucking hate Thomas Street. I hate that old bitch in the silver Honda Civic who feels the need to let every single fucker from every fucking side street pull out. Look, politeness is grand, I let people out too, but not every single fucking time. Maybe she has nowhere to be, no dinner to eat, no kids to see. I start honking after the fifth or six one. No reaction. You go ahead sure, my life is barren.

The M4 is moving but slowly, slowly. And my back. I have this pain in my leg, my hip, my lower back. Everytime I clutch, it shoots. Go to the doctor, Lorraine says. For what? To spend sixty quid for him to tell me to buy one of those cushions. I have one of those cushions. It cost me sixty quid. It doesn't fucking work. 

Four smokes later we get to Enfield. Get off here, or go on to Kinnegad? It's a gamble. It's moving here, like I say, and the Kinnegad way is shorter. This one might be empty, it might be fucking packed. You never know. I stay on. Light another fag. The tracking on the car is kind of fucked. You can't really let go of the wheel. I need to get it done. That Civic cunt is long gone but yet another asshole breaks suddenly while I'm trying to light up. For fuck's sake. Yeah, I'm probably a little too close to him, but it's fine, it's grand. I try to get going again in third, and almost cut out. Jesus.

Kinnegad. I don't think I believe in God anymore, not since Conleth was born, but I say a prayer anyway. Please let it be clear. Please Jesus. Please Mary. Please the Holy Fucking Ghost. 

Yes. Suddenly not a soul. I roll down the window. I turn up 98fm. I open the fucker up. The feeling of release. Like being stuck in a lift for two hours and the door opens and you just charge the fuck out. About five miles from home now. I love this road when it's quiet. Couple of twist and turns, but I know it well. I'm in fourth, fifth and I'm fucked if I'm putting my foot to the clutch between here and dinner. Lorraine makes the best fucking bolognese. I can taste it already. The sun is only coming down now. I dread the winter, leaving work in the dark. But now, right now, I feel good. There's time for one more smoke too.  I can't smoke in the house with the kids and even if I just sneak one out the back Lorraine looks unhappy. So one more now.

I dropped the lighter that last time, when I almost cut out.  It's under my legs. I reach down. And I think I've hit something. I slow, looking in the mirror. And I see something lying in the road behind me. I stop. Get out. Walk back. It's an old fella. His bike's in the ditch. I don't get too close but I can still see that his face is white and his eyes are open. I turn away. I get back in the car. I drive home.

"They didn't bring mince. I didn't have a chance to get to the shop, so I ordered pizza."

"Oh."

"It's in the oven."

"Right."

"You stink of cigarettes."

"Yeah. Sorry."

3 Johns and Janes for the comment whore:

Annie said...

Nobody knows what to say.

WiseMóna said...

I am liking this a lot.

Gimme said...

I am glad. About both.

 
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