MY LAST DAY as a working stiff, December 19, 1999, I came to the newsroom in Houston with Happy Faces of all sizes that I had cut from yellow poster paper the previous day. I tacked and taped them to my cubicle. Yes, a cubicle, I never had an office.
That evening about midnight — I worked the swing shift — almost all my coworkers had gone home. I stood up, waved to the few remaining folks, and walked out the door for good, having no clue what I’d be doing even a year later.
Twenty-plus years later, I’m hanging loose.
It was a lazy Saturday today, so the two of us took a ride into the countryside. We went to the tiny town of Los Corrales and turned around.
It’s been said repeatedly that our state resembles Hawaii during the green months. Never having been to Hawaii, I cannot vouch for that, but it’s darn nice here.
Half a century ago, when I was visiting my maternal grandmother in the summertime, after dinner at noon, my grandmother and I would take the Ford for a ride down the red-clay roads. Usually, we would stop half a mile away at her sister’s place — her name was Bubba, and she was rail thin and chain-smoked — so she could come along for the ride.
I was too young for a driver’s license, but nobody gave a hoot.
I often think of those Sunday drives through the fields and woods of southwest Georgia when my child bride and I do pretty much the same thing on weekends. The two-lane, rural roads here are not red clay, of course, just your garden-variety asphalt at best. I always wanted to live in the mountains.
In the video, which I made in the morning, the music you hear is coming from the neighbors out back. They are sharing sorts.