There was a tree I used to climb when I was a kid. I haven’t thought about that tree in years.
I wallowed in a bubble of nothing. My eyes closed, I focused on the cold air of my breath and leather-like-plastic of the steering wheel. There are moments one has to remain ignorant of…for at least a few minutes. Because once you peek around the corner of the unknown, you’ll understand the reality of the situation. A reality where your whole life will change. So instead I lingered in ignorance.
After what seems like hours, the wallowing becomes uncomfortably hot. Like a furnace left on all night, but you’re just too exhausted to get out of bed. There’s a knocking. Not the patterned *knock, knock, knock* *knock, knock, knock* but an incessant rapidity and increasing intensity. “tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, knock, knock, knock, knock, knock, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, pound, pound, pound, pound, pound, pound” I never realized it, but those are all onomatopoetic.
“JILL!” I hear, muffled, but emphatic. “JILL!”
What…who knows I’m here. I don’t even know where my glasses are. I manage to swat my arm completely missing the door handle. My knuckles land somewhere between the locking pin and the window. The glass is so cold. Too tired to swat again, I work my finger tips around the locking pin. It’s so hard to get a grip, even once my fingers wrap around it, I can’t press them into a grasp.
“JILL, YOU CAN DO IT.”
I swallow. That’s painful too. I have to take a breath or two before I try it again. I try to pull the pin one more time, but instead I give up on manual labor and it occurs to me to drag my hand to the automatic door lock. Rounded and grooved at the ends, of course the first time I press it I relock the car. I then try the other direction on the switch. Immediately a gush of freezing wind and the smell of fireplace overwhelms my senses.
“Jill, you’re going to be okay.”
A warm hand cups my chin. Then moves to my forehead. Finally I feel a forefinger and a thumb pry open my eyelids.
“Jill, can you see me?”
I squeeze my eyes shut. It can’t be…what’s…Marty doing here?
Too be continued…(more regularly)