Play Nice

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[This is where the summary would go if I'd bothered to write one.]


The girl, let’s call her Kate for the name doesn’t really matter, called collect from every new city. Always at 12:45 am their time. And they were always awake. Not waiting however. It just so happened that they hardly slept. This was just one of the many things the girl didn’t have in common with them. She slept all the time. When she wasn’t sleeping she was thinking about sleeping. They thought this strange.

Actually, they thought everything about her was strange.

And she agreed. So she left.

But she called from each new city and listened as they told her about all the normal things they did during the day. When they asked what she did all day long, in all of those different cities, she lied. She looked down at the tourism brochures she collected at local libraries and recited the information found within. They oohed and aahed, happy you see, that she was getting ‘out.’

Out was a very big deal for them. Out was where life happened according to them. Out was what normal people did. If out was big, then normal was huge.

She didn’t understand this, for it seemed to her that people went out only to go back in. From home to garage to work to garage to home. But they meant well.

So she lied.

She didn’t tell them that the first thing she did when she arrived in a new city was find a cheap motel. One in a half-way decent neighborhood, one where the rooms weren’t rented by the hour. She thought, see, that that made her safe. And when one spent big chunks of the day asleep, one needed a feeling of security, however fleeting.

She slept whole days away, waking only to eat and shower. Her limbs often continued to sleep even as she moved about. They were heavy and reproachful. Not normal.

Every once in a while she did go out, usually to a park where she watched children playing. She liked to sit on a bench and stare as the small bodies ran around, slipping and sliding, shouting and laughing. Even when they cried she thought them beautiful.

Kids understand, she thought. They get out right.

Published 03/28/04 in Writing • | Views: 2282 times | Print

2 Comments & Trackbacks

I enjoyed reading that.  I can identify with the need to ‘be’ at home.  When I go out I find myself looking forward to getting back. I’m really enjoyng the ‘Unconscious Mutterings’ every week

Posted by Anji  on  03/29  at  12:32 AM

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