Day five started in the dark yet again. There was time for a very quick shower and then breakfast before we left the fancy truck stop. Everything was over priced in my opinion, but it compensated for the amenities I suppose. Either way it’s where we ate and where Jerry bought the last day’s Diesel.
We were on the road again, when Jerry noticed something ‘funny’ about the handing of the truck. It was a kind of thump in the rear somewhere. The truck ran okay, and he had control so he decided to hold off checking it till we pulled over for lunch. It was a gutsy call anything could go wrong and that was a lot of steel to be throwing around the highway, if something did go wrong.
At lunch we found that it was just a loose strap allowing the load to bounce but not really move. “That’s pretty much what I thought. If it had been a flat the trailer would have been all over the road,” Jerry said. I had to take his word I had pulled very few trailers. Maybe a short based water wagon but nothing as long as the 25ft behemoth we carried that day.
At 3PM we pulled into Augusta Georgia, then went looking for a street in a residential sub division. Since Jerry had called from the road again, there were several men waiting for us at the site.
“Bob?” Jerry asked of a man about sixty, who seemed to be in charge.
“That’s me,” the man said. “I see you have my fire escape.”
“Yes sir, I see you have some men to help us unload it,” Jerry commented.
“Yes so why don’t we get on with it,” Bob asked.
“Why don’t you walk around it first to make sure it has not changed from the picture I sent you. Then you need to pay me before we off load it.” Jerry explained.
“Fair enough,” Bob said as he began walking around the trailer. “It looks just fine,” he said handing Jerry a credit card. Jerry actually had a card reader that he could hook to his mobile phone somehow. After the card was processed. I helped as much as I could, with the bad hand, to unload the rusty steel. We were headed home by 4PM.
On the drive home Jerry said, “You surprised me Sylvia with what a good assistant you were. You didn’t ask me to make a lot of bathroom stops and you didn’t want to go shopping in every town we passed through. I have had helpers who did.”
“Jerry I collect memories, not shit,” I said to end that conversation.
Jerry just nodded. After that we rode in silence an hour or so before we got into the mountains on the home stretch. It was dark when he pulled onto my street. I grabbed my bag and bed roll through one of the back doors. It was under the plywood bed, so it was tight, but it came out, I slung the bag over my shoulder and I held the blankets in my arm like a child.
“So you want to do this again,” Jerry asked.
“I don’t think so Jerry. I don’t think I want to any of it again,” I informed him.
“Not even the sex?” he asked.
“Especially the sex,” with that I turned to walk away. He was mumbling a long sentence with a very clear “bitch” at the end of it. I smiled knowing I had gotten under his skin and not minding one bit. I didn’t think his treatment of me deserved any better.
After a week the junk mail had been backing up. I had three or four medical bills, but I checked on line and found the insurance for the state was taking care of it. With that knowledge, I planned to schedule my next visit for evaluation of the hand with a clinic nearer to me. I made myself a note and left it on the kitchen counter, where I heated my coffee.
Then I took a bath and went to bed. Okay I did put a frozen bagel in the microwave, then in the toaster oven. The margarine seemed to never go bad in the fridge, so I had some of that with strawberry jelly on the bagel. The jelly did come from the my almost daily Hardee’s breakfast biscuit. Yeah I kept all those little single serving containers. I’m a cheap bitch, what can I tell you.
After the bagel I spread my blankets out on my DIY sofa/bed and went to sleep. I had to go to the bathroom twice in the middle of the night. It looked as though the road trip had caught up to me.
I slept until 9AM, which was longer than normal. I was catching up on my sleep, I told myself. I went into the kitchen where I fixed myself another bagel, because at 9AM I didn’t want to take the trike to the Hardee’s at the plaza. I also didn’t want to rush into anything else. The view from my tiny kitchen table was out the back door. There was a glass pane in the top of the door with a view of the drive way. It wasn’t thrilling but I could see anyone who came my way. At 9:30AM or so there was no one coming to visit.
After the bagel I felt good enough to do my rehab exercise on the hand. I had taken my aleve, but it hadn’t had time to kick in, so I would have more pain than at any other time during the day. Still the pain told me things as well.
I removed the elastic bandage carefully. Then I lifted my hand off the molded splint where it had rested. I didn’t have to use my right hand to lift it from the splint. That was a huge improvement. At first the pain of the dropping hand had been unbearable. By the time the five weeks had passed, there was enough strength in the wrist to hold the hand up so that it didn’t put so much pressure on the separated bones. I had remembered to bring the rubber ball to breakfast so I could try to grip it. When I first began, I wasn’t even able to wrap my fingers around the large red ball. by that time I could at least lift it. I couldn’t squeeze it yet, that was my next challenge.
Just curling my fingers around the ball was a great improvement. I could actually lift it. I wasn’t able to turn my hand around at the wrist yet, but I though it might come back. I would be happy when I felt comfortable enough to leave the splint behind. Just everyday things would be better than any rehab. Rehab exercises. They were only for an hour or two a day. But without the splint, it would be small things all day long. Well that was my thinking anyway.
I called the clinic to make an appointment, but before they would take me they wanted to know payment stuff. Since Mission had dealt with all that, I had to call her as well. At least I left a message for her to call the clinic, then have the clinic call me. I had a feeling Mission would like to just forget all about me, but it wasn’t going to happen.
By the time I left the message for Mission, I was dressed and looking for something to pass the time. Hiding the bug out bad had yet to be done. I had it temporarily in the trunk of the Toyota. I was still using the cloth tool bag with the false bottom. It didn’t look too out of place in the trunk of a five year old car. It did need to be in a better place for sure. I racked my brain but could think of no place safer at the moment.
I had too much pain in the hand during rehab to consider riding the two wheeler, but the three wheeler was doable. So I took the tarp off it and rolled it out. By the time I reached the end of the short driveway, I was ready to fire the engine. It had been hard going up even the slight incline of the driveway. Once in the street it was easier to get up the required speed, of one or two mph. to drag start the engine. After it was running and I had adjusted the choke, I sat back and enjoyed riding and pedaling the trike. Mostly it was just ride,but not in all terrain, sometimes I had to help by boosting the power input. All in all it was even more fun than the two wheeler. I got more exercise on the two wheeler I’m sure, but the trike got a hell of a lot more attention.
I stopped by to see Mary Ellen. “Hello Mary,” I said as I entered her shop.
“I tried to call you a couple of times, but you didn’t answer,” she said. I realized I hadn’t given her the number of the burn phone. She had the old number.
“Here let me write my new number down. I was out of town anyway. I went on a road trip,” I said. “So what can a cripple do for you?”
“I got a client that wants you especially. I thought you might make a movie for me.” Mary Ellen suggested.
“I still got this bad hand hon, but I’ll tell you what. I am trying to set up an appointment with an orthopedic clinic near here. If I get it set up and the doctor says I can take the splint off, I will do it.” I said.
“So even if he says no, you will do it when you can take the splint off, even if it is a month from now?” she asked.
“Yeah, when the splint comes off, I’ll fuck on camera for you,” I said. Why not I thought I didn’t have to worry about being outed anymore.
I rode the trike to the Sheriff’s office just to see if Learner was around. He had been ducking me’ What the hell I’ll just stalk his ass, I thought. Going to the station was a little like stalking, but I had no idea why he was avoiding me so he deserved it.
The special operation squad had changed their hours again. It was something they did from time to time. He didn’t come on till 6PM the whole week.
“Hey Porter, is that your motorized trike out there,” Simpson asked.
“Sure is chief deputy,” I said with a smile.
“You know that thing is considered a moped and you have to wear a helmet?” he said. “Not a bicycle helmet either. A motorcycle helmet.”
“Why you being a hard ass?” I asked.
“The law applies to everyone,” he said with a strange smile.
I made sure no one could here my reply, “Simpson, you prick, why you on my ass?”
His voice was equally low when he replied, “They act like you are some kind of super hero around here. Just want to remind you that in the eyes of the law, you are just another citizen.”
“Chief, I never ask to be shot, and I never asked for any special treatment. You are beginning to piss me off.” I replied.
“And I should care why,” he asked.
“You said yourself the people think I’m some kind of super hero. I just might be your boss one day.” I said with a smile.
“Not a chance, I would quit first,” he said.
“Well you might want to start looking for a job now,” I said.
“The elections are more than a year from now, I have plenty of time and so do you,”
So Simpson was planning to run. He wanted to make sure I knew, he didn’t want me around. Well fuck him, I thought.