Monday, August 31, 2015

hitchhike


by roger "pegleg" wilson

illustrations by konrad kraus and danny delacroix





i decided to hitchhike to fresno california to buy a banana.

i got a ride outside barrington vermont from a guy in a 1963 oldsmobile.

he said his name was john. i believed him.

i told him my name was ted.

after that we didn’t talk much.

the car rocked from side to side on the highway like a boat on a stormy sea.

night fell.

we were halfway between pittsburgh and louisville kentucky when the car turned into two cars.

the one with john at the wheel speeded up and disappeared from sight.

the other one with me in the passenger seat kept on.

there was no steering wheel.

i could drive it with my mind but i couldn’t slow it down.

and i couldn’t stop it because it had no brakes.

traffic increased when i got almost to columbus ohio.

it became harder and harder to keep in my lane.

big semis and buses began crowding and passing me.

but i couldn’t slow down.

then i heard a siren. the highway patrol!

i wanted them to catch me but i couldn’t slow down.

then i saw a dirt road off to the side.

somehow i got the car on to it!

the car bounced and bumped along between the trees and over the rocks but at least it started to slow down.

finally it stopped!

i breathed a sigh a relief. i was still alive.

i got out of the car fast before it could start up again!

me and the car were in a clearing. naturally there was a cabin in the clearing.

there were no lights on in the cabin.

it started to rain.

then i heard the sirens again.

the highway patrol had discovered where i went and was following me!

would they believe my story about not being able to stop the car?

about driving it with only my mind?

the rain started to come down hard. that decided me.

i made a dash for the cabin.

even though somehow i felt positive there was nobody inside i started pounding on the door.

the siren stopped but i could hear the patrol car coming down the road.

i pushed at the door. it opened.

“anybody home?” i called.

even though i knew there wasn’t.

i bumped into a table.

there was a dark shape in the corner - an old-fashioned icebox.

i opened it.

there was a bottle of coca-cola inside - it looked nice and cold.

and a banana.

a bright yellow banana.

i didn’t have to go all the way to fresno california for a banana after all.

***


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