I liked my teaser post more than the actual post I planned to write so I was going to leave it there. A suitcase pun in every line is hard to follow up. I was going for the old radio show cliffhanger-endings (or the old Batman tv show). But sufficient wheedling from Jane has compelled me to write up the post she wanted.
It was a gorgeous day. We went for a walk. The sun was shining, the trails were death traps covered in poison ivy, and bikers were aiming for me as they whizzed by at high speeds yelling a doppler shifted “ONYERLEFFFFFFFFFFFT”.
After evading strollers, dogs, homicidal cyclists, and Jane’s tendency to walk into me (I think she has an inner ear issue or brain damage, take your pick), we left the trail and started heading home on the mean suburban streets of North Virginia. (“North Virginia” is so distinct from “Virginia” that it’s usually capitalized like a separate state. We’re thinking of stripping statehood from West Virginia and using it up here”)
Along our way home we walked past a pile of trash. Mattresses, lawnmower, and alas – suitcases. Jane was drawn towards the pile and found the two brown hardshell suitcases. The large-ish Samsonite ones you would see businessmen use back in the 70s-80s.
Then the awkwardness ensued.
First, the homeowner came out. Jane froze in place like the woman could only see moving objects. While it may have worked in Jurassic Park, apparently this woman was not a T-Rex and she was not fooled. She was very friendly and not at all disturbed to find Jane knee-deep in her discards. She let us know that that we’re welcome to anything we would like in there. She started with a large pile of discarded items and people have been coming by all day taking things. We made some small talk.
We took Jane’s suitcases and headed home. First, she was insisting on carrying both. I quickly envisioned walking down our semi-busy street with me not carrying anything and Jane lugging two suitcases. Well, that wouldn’t convey the right manly image. So I took the larger of the two. I could use it as a shield to keep her from bumping into me at least.
We’re walking down the street and through a busy intersection and I could only imagine how we appeared. I was in a Nike workout shirt, shorts, and running shoes carrying a giant brown 70’s suitcase. Jane was in… whatever she calls that outfit… with a slightly smaller suitcase. We’re walking down a busy street, vaguely in the direction of a metro stop in the middle of the hot afternoon. The cars drove by and we garnered quite a few looks as we huffed the last mile home. I really was expecting a few offers for a ride.
On the final stretch, Jane pulled ahead and I whipped out my camera phone to snap the photo. I thought back on all the awkward situations she’s tortured me with and got a bit lost daydreaming that maybe she really was running away from home. And that was what inspired my earlier post.