I was roaring down I-20 when I achieved affirmation…
Well…that’s not entirely accurate…
I had to stop and eat a sandwich first.
As an avid motorcyclist I often avoid the interstate highways. The back roads usually provide varied scenery, more interesting people, and generally have a lot less traffic. As I usually stop every hundred miles or so for fuel and a break anyway, I prefer the back roads for the widely spaced towns, the non-chain restaurants, and the friendly folks at the out of the way gas stations.
By contrast when traveling the interstate highway system I am often hard pressed to tell the difference between one exit and another. For hundreds of miles along the interstate the towns all appear the same, with the same stores and restaurants at each exit. The few that are different have striven so hard to create some sort of tourist shopping Mecca that the results, no matter how widespread, are inevitably remarkably similar. I call this phenomena “gemerica” (generic America) and thankfully it does not usually extend to the back road towns.
All the advantages of the back roads are at a cost of course. The speed limits slow dramatically when passing through the towns, and the distance traveled is often significantly longer than the interstate highway route. Fuel management can be critical due to the distance between towns and the relatively limited range of most motorcycles.
Texas is vast, and America is even vaster. There are just sometimes, either due to a hectic schedule or the requirements of my soul that I have to hit the interstate. Though the destination for me is the journey itself, sometimes some high-speed, uninterrupted blasting down the road is exactly what is required. Today was one of those days.
This day had dawned clear, dry, and hot. The promise of record temperatures had been on the air. Typical Texas weather for August, and the early morning’s promise had been fulfilled in spades as the day wore on. I smiled and squinted into the late afternoon’s blazing sun as I finished fueling the Valkyrie for the next leg of the trip. Superb machine that she is, the big cruiser seldom needs attention despite the extreme weather. The man does need attention however. Plentiful water, soft drinks, and an occasional break are needed, and I had been at this all day.
I ride for many reasons, the very least of which is simple transportation. I did need to reach home, but today I was mainly thinking…experiencing the world…recharging the soul. After some time on the highway, the big cruiser and I merge and become one. The man and the machine, The Dragon, together greater than the sum of the parts, bursts into life and revels in the simple ecstasy of being…existing…of experiencing.
Once this state is achieved I am loath to disturb it, but the man part of this equation was hungry. I had fueled the machine, now it was the man’s turn. I needed to eat.
I needed food, but some solitude was also in order. A nice quiet place to eat was what I needed. I had paid no real attention when I arrived for fuel, but now I looked toward the store with the prospects of a meal in mind. My eyes widened in disbelief and I burst out laughing, probably to the confusion of others using the gas pumps. I was not going to find solitude here, though food would not be a problem. This was—and I am not making this up—a combination gas, fried chicken, ice cream, sub sandwich, convenience, hamburger, and pizza store. All were chain stores, and they had not simply combined them, but rather they had built a segment of each recognizable chain restaurant and kind of mashed them into the sides of the convenience store! Travel plaza indeed! What an architectural nightmare! Even the roofs were different, matching the distinct outlines of the chain store in question, but all mushed together on the same building. “Gemerica” taken far beyond any rational extreme. Wow. I have not yet decided whether I find this hilarious or disturbing.
Inside I wandered from store to store (they are actually separated by doors) and eventually decided on an impressively large sub sandwich. Turkey, ham, and roast beef, along with Swiss and provolone cheeses, olives, onions, peppers, and tomato all combined in a mouthwatering freshly made combination. A bit of mustard, salt, and pepper to top it off…yum! On the way out of the convenience store I grabbed a couple Diet Cokes and a bottle of water. It was way too hot to think about a candy bar—it would melt before I crossed the parking lot.
I packed everything away in my black canvas bag and roared off down the highway. I had the food, now I just needed the solitude. I grinned as the big machine reached highway speeds. Solitude would not be a problem. This was Texas…solitude would come.
Within 20 miles or so a “picnic area” appeared beside the highway. Here in Texas at least, a “rest area” has bathroom facilities and a “picnic area” can be anything from a gravel parking lot to a very nice facility with covered tables and benches (but no bathroom facilities). As most folks on the interstate are in a tremendous hurry, the “picnic areas” are usually not crowded. Folks choosing instead to make a quick stop at the “rest area” or just the gas stations.
Just the thing I needed. Scarcely slowing the big bike I took the exit at over 70mph and then braked heavily, pulling the gleaming black and chrome machine smartly to a halt in front of a choice covered picnic table. I took a deep breath before getting off the bike. This was a nice place. The tables were on a hill overlooking the highway on one side and a forested area on the other. By accident or design the lay of the land or some other phenomena muffled the noise of the passing cars, and the air was pleasantly cool blowing out of the woods, at least when compared to the blast furnace heat down on the highway. It was well maintained, but felt unused. I had the park all to myself. I chuckled with just a bit of scorn for the cars whizzing by below. Stuffed in their boxes, isolated from the surroundings, and mindlessly intent on a destination…the travelers down there had no idea at all what they were missing.
The sandwich was perfect, the ice-cold sodas and bottled water keeping it cool enough on the short ride to be immensely satisfying. The simple things in life can be some of the most important. I polished off both the Cokes and sat thoughtfully for a few minutes. I was contemplating the world and just how big it could be…hundreds of people speeding by below me and totally oblivious to the fact that I was even there.
Rested and satisfied, I was finally ready to continue my journey. I picked up my trash and tossed it in the heavy metal trash barrel. Reflexively I reached down beside the path and picked up what looked like a very weathered tube/can—one of those cans for specialty potato chips—with the intent of throwing it away too. This was an almost unconscious action…it was trash and there was a trashcan handy.
It is interesting how profound an effect that even an idle action can produce.
As I opened the heavy steel trashcan lid I saw that in my other hand hornets were swarming all over the tube I had picked up. Dozens of them. Bright, menacing red and scrambling out of the tube. They were spreading their wings to take flight, and they were looking at me. Instantly I dropped the tube in the trash and slammed the lid shut. I also took off running, but I already knew it was too late.
In rapid succession I was stung multiple times. Waves of pain struck with each hit—back, shoulder, and four or five times in the neck. I killed at least three swatting them off me with my bare hands, and then they were gone. Apparently the majority of them were stuck in the trashcan. The damage was done however. Pain was coursing through my body and I could already feel my neck getting stiff.
Normally I am as healthy as a horse, but one weakness is that I am intensely allergic to wasp and hornet stings. This has moderated some as an adult, but my reactions still can be extremely severe depending on where and how much I have been stung. Four or five times in the neck…this was going to be bad. I expected to need medical attention.
My first aid training came into play…step one, send someone for help. I stumbled for my bike and grabbed my cell phone. “No Service” was on the display. Sheesh. Will this thing ever come in handy? The only time it ever works is when somebody is giving me some sort of bad news. I guarantee it would work, right now, right here in this same spot, if my boss was trying to call me in to work.
Step two…oh…wait. I was starting to get confused here…I had not finished step one yet. I still needed to send someone for help. Of course, first I had to find someone. I got on the bike and actually got her started, intending to get down to the road and get some help. Then I realized I could barely see. My central vision was simply a gray blob, and I was starting to see some intensely bright colors in my peripheral vision, and not much else. When had that happened? What the heck?
Rule number one in first aid training suddenly popped into my mind. Do not become a victim yourself, and do not make matters worse by your actions. Hmmm. I was already a victim, but riding a powerful monster like The Dragon when I could not see certainly was not going to make anything better. I switched off the bike and carefully dismounted. This time she was not going to be able to carry me to safety.
Okay, step one was out. Screw it. On to step two. Analyze the situation. Determine the nature of the problem and appropriate first aid. Hmmm. Okay. The problem. I had been stung. I am very allergic. Mostly I cannot see.
What? Cannot see? And just when had I become so weak I could barely stand? What the heck was happening to me?
Suddenly I realized the all the other problems were simply symptoms of the real problem, which was that I could not breathe. Perhaps it was the intense pain that had disguised this symptom, or perhaps it had just begun, but my neck had swollen so much that I was having extreme difficulty taking a breath. I fell to my knees beside the bike. This was not good.
I rummaged in my black bag for the two pill bottles I carry. One is ibuprofen, which I carry for occasional headaches or muscle aches, and one is a strong antihistamine, for occasional allergy attacks. I normally do not get allergy symptoms, but every motorcyclist can relate to the fact that even a minor allergy attack can be catastrophic when wearing a full-face helmet. I grabbed both bottles, but I could not see well enough to tell which was which.
I snagged the bottled water and staggered into the shade of the picnic cover. My vision had gone completely red now. I carefully opened each bottle by feel and shook out at least 4 of each pill. I placed them in my mouth and tried swallowing them with a mouthful of water. I choked down at least some of them, but not all. The intense pain caused me to spit out some of the pills and most of the water. I could not swallow. My vision was starting to go black in the center of the red field. Everything else was totally obscured now. I suddenly realized the loud “thud-thud” I had been hearing was the beating of my heart.
Calmly I reached for the pills again. I took two or three of each and put them in my mouth, mostly under my tongue. I was losing my ability to concentrate and could not feel my body anymore—there was only the pain. With the last of my coordination I laid down on the picnic bench. There was little else to do, as my strength was rapidly waning. Besides, I could almost breath in that position. I relaxed and concentrated on getting some air.
Up to this point I was still certain I was going to be just fine. One of my defining characteristics is that I am fundamentally incapable of believing in my own demise. I always have believed in my ability to cope with whatever life throws at me. Yes, I know that life is inevitably fatal…but if I am ever found dead, there will be a look of incredulous surprise on my face.
My total being was concentrating on breathing. I was aware of nothing else. Time and space were irrelevant. I could envision my airway as a cross-section and focused all my being on the effort to get the maximum amount of air through the limited space. Hypersensitive to the limited volume of air I could get, suddenly I knew that it was still constricting further. With each breath I got less life-sustaining oxygen. Sheer will power was not going to be enough, but there was nothing else I could do…there were no more tools available to me.
Three more labored breaths and that was it. Totally closed off, I could not even exhale. I was suffocating.
I would like to say I was brave and did not panic. I am absolutely sure that I was. That may even be true, but the reality of the situation was that I could not have panicked had I wanted to. I had no control over any movement at all and a complete loss of awareness of my body. Suffocating did not feel at all like I expected it to. I do not highly recommend it.
The black in my vision abruptly expanded to engulf me completely, and I lost all awareness of anything external. Strange the things I think at times like these. For the life of me I could not remember what I had done with the key to my bike. Suddenly it was vitally important that I know…
Well, that just cannot be good…
I found myself sitting on the end of the concrete picnic table and enthusiastically swinging my legs back and forth like a little kid. It was still a bright summer day, though the light was a bit subdued. Everything had a creamy white, kind of softer diffused cast to it despite the blazing sun in the sky. There seemed to be no shadows at all. I was humming tunelessly but stopped when I looked to my right and saw my own body lying lifelessly on my back on the picnic bench.
I slowly and deliberately blinked twice. I was still lying there. “Well that’s interesting.” I mumbled softly. I looked ridiculous. The throat and chest were grotesquely swollen and one hand was puffy as well. I was an odd color and had bruising starting to show around some of the swollen areas. There was an incredulous look of surprise on my face, except the mouth was twisted in pain.
Strangely I felt no need to do anything at the moment. “Now what?” I wondered idly, then shrugged and resumed swinging my legs and humming.
I’ve had stranger days.
Some time passed before I was aware of an approaching entity. I could hear nothing unusual, in fact I suddenly realized that there really was no sound at all, even from the passing cars down on the highway, but I knew something was coming. I could feel…her…yes it was a her…approaching. She was in a terrible, frantic hurry.
Her name was Lilith and its Hebrew meaning is “spirit of the night”. That is astoundingly appropriate for her, as she is absolutely the largest specimen of barn owl I have ever observed. I have met her before. She is one of my guardians. One of my influences. Or for those in a less ethereal vein, she is one of the voices of my subconscious…one of the manifestations of my instincts. Either way, her purpose is to guide me, and to guard and protect me. I have rarely seen her outside of dreams, and her presence now gave me expectation of events to come. I knew this was not really a dream, and she is never alone in her efforts. Things were at the very least about to be…interesting.
Somehow compelled, I stopped humming as she approached.
Her usual grace was precluded by her haste, and she clumsily landed on the table and slid to a stop. She took no notice of the “me” sitting on the end of the table. Another hop and she was looking over the side of the table and into the twisted face of my uninhabited body.
“Oh damn, damn, damn! How could this be?” in her agitation she was actually bouncing off the table with small hops.
I almost laughed out loud. Even in my dreams I was barely accustomed to hearing an owl speak, but one swearing was almost too much. I was glad I kept quiet; as abruptly she threw her head back and let out a cry of grief and loss. It was obviously from deep within. Laughing would have been terribly inappropriate. I looked at her with a new understanding.
Shortly I was aware of a large white wolf approaching. Another of my guardians, he loped gracefully out of the woods and padded to a halt by the concrete picnic bench. He was breathtaking in his strength and form, and quite frankly, he is flat-out gorgeous. His name is Lucious. He also ignored the “me” on the table and looked uneasily at the still figure on the bench. Standing easily the height of a man’s chest, he peered down at my body with his piercing yellow eyes, then slowly tilted back his head and let out a mournful howl that sent shivers down into my very soul. The waves of pain and loss were almost visible on the air, and the depths of his feeling brought tears to my eyes. I wanted to reassure him, drop to my knees and hug him, but was again compelled to remain quiet.
As the howl faded the owl’s voice asked, “Has he fallen into darkness?”
The wolf, whose name means “light”—my teacher, my guide, and my friend—simply looked stricken. “I cannot see his path. This was not his way! We did not foresee this. There are other forces at work here. We must await Adoraim. This is her domain.”
Ah. Adoraim. Her name means strength. More accurately it means the strength and eternity of the sea. She is the last of my three guides, and easily the most impressive. Adoraim is a dragon. A full-fledged, fire breathing, flying, toothed, clawed, truck-sized dragon. She is covered in iridescent black, nearly jewel-like scales and her claws are copper colored and metallic. Her eyes are an intense, almost blinding blue and they can look right through you. An ancient Indian once told me that she gives me courage, tremendous strength, and…eternity. I am really not certain that I understand exactly what means, but I am just wise enough that I am reasonably sure that I don’t actually want to find out.
I felt her before she arrived—there was an expectation suddenly on the air...a power…an aura of timelessness…the somewhat electric feeling of an impending thunderstorm—so I was a bit forewarned. But both the wolf and the owl leapt several feet, the owl actually taking flight, as Adoraim crashed to the ground beside the shelter. Apparently she just dropped from a great height and landed on her talons with a tremendous crash. Even the ground shook, and random debris spattered around the area.
I grinned to myself. A little bit of me was showing. Dragons are not known to be subtle.
She carefully edged her head under the shelter and fixed my lifeless body in the stare of one brilliant blue eye.
Her voice is absolutely hypnotic. When she speaks it captivates me. Her voice is undeniably and intensely female, but it is made up of several chords interlaced in a beautiful harmonic.
She moaned, “He is gone.” There was a depth of sadness there greater than any cry would express.
The compulsion to remain silent suddenly left me. I stopped swinging my legs and stood up. I carefully looked down at my body on the bench. Ugh. I looked awful. I wanted to wipe the look of surprise and pain off the face but somehow knew I could not touch. I looked toward at the three mourners. It was apparent they could only see the body, not the “me” that was standing there.
I tried to lighten the situation with some humor and said rather loudly, “Some guardians you guys are.” The words obviously broke through whatever barrier was between them and me. In retrospect, startling your friends in this sort of situation is probably not a good idea. Especially when your particular group of friends includes a bona fide fire-breathing dragon. Hmm. Subtlety is not my strong point either. The reaction was immediate.
The owl simply vanished. The dragon turned her head and I suddenly found myself on the business end of a fully functioning flamethrower. I raised my hand and yelled, “Wait!” but it was too late. I was completely engulfed in the fire. There was not even time to move. Strangely there was no pain, and it really felt more like a wet fog. The colors were surreal and the sound was oddly muted. I could see the dragon and behind her the wolf, readying for a finishing leap if whatever had startled them managed to survive the fiery onslaught.
I stood there surprised for fully a second while the fire washed over me. The paint on the metal poles of the picnic cover burst into flames and I could feel waves of pressure wafting through me. I clearly saw the instant the dragon realized what she had done, I saw the wolf tumble violently to the ground, perhaps with injury, as he checked his killing leap, and I heard the owl when she also realized the truth. She was swearing again.
Then the scene vanished. The owl, the wolf, and the dragon faded from sight. Even the land and the road were gone. I felt I was flying through a black void, and I found myself staring at a pattern of lights that slowly resolved themselves into gossamer-like strands. Forking, separating, connecting, and visibly moving, an insanely complicated web was spread before me. Some threads were stronger than others; some went for a distance and then faded from view; others terminated abruptly. For all its strangeness and complexity, the web looked vaguely familiar.
I found that if I concentrated on a section I would zoom in on it. The closer I got the bigger it became. Finally I realized I was flying over the complicated pattern and could approach a section at will. As I focused on one particularly colorful junction I could see figures moving along the strands. That one interested me and I reached out to touch it.
I landed in the scene I had just left, though a short distance away. I could see the dragon, the wolf, and the owl all huddled together and intently conferring. I could see the body on the bench. I could see all this but if I concentrated I could also see the pattern of the strands. The one I was on was bright, but only went on for a short distance. The junction was behind me, and there were several longer strands leading from there.
With a blinding clarity I realized that the junctions were major decision points or significant events in my life. Each strand leaving a junction was a possible result. Some went on out of sight, some terminated instantly. Some looked like they were fading from disuse. The whole pattern was a vast and complicated roadmap of my life—past, present, and future. As I looked harder I understood that the strand I was on ended abruptly, and though I did not want to think about that, I knew exactly what that meant. Not a good thing…
I was not ready to leave this world. I never will be. There are just too many experiences left to partake of. Grimly I decided that I was not going to go. I had taken the wrong exit. I was on the wrong road. I somehow knew I could not turn around…running against the traffic is a sure invitation to disaster…for myself and for others. It seemed I was trapped. Conventional wisdom would say there was no “out”.
Of course, I have been trapped before…and I have never been conventional.
I concentrated harder, pulling myself back above the strands. Even soaring above the pattern I could not go backwards, but I looked carefully at the strands radiating from the last junction. The one I was on was easy to reach, and it was strongly pulling me, but I could see its impending end. I picked the next one over…the really bright one, looked at it carefully, slowly reached out, and then I simply crossed over. There is no other way to explain it.
It was fading, but in the scene I had just left I could see the dragon looking at my lifeless form. I could see a tear forming in her giant eye, could see it slowly roll off her snout, could see it begin to fall…
I awoke to an intense Texas thunderstorm. I was under cover but rain was blowing under the pavilion and drenching my face. I sat up sputtering and instantly regretted the sudden movement as the pain struck me. My neck and back burned like fire, and I had a headache that rivaled any I have ever experienced. I looked down at my hands and found them to be shaking and an odd shade of blue. My fingernails were purple, but were rapidly lightening in color. I froze as I suddenly realized that I could breathe! I gratefully took deep lungs full of the cool, rain-freshened air.
The swelling in my hand and my neck had subsided considerably, though around the extremities of the swollen areas I had ugly bruising that was becoming more apparent as my skin color normalized. I found the ibuprofen bottle spilled across the table and took four of them, hoping to calm the pounding headache.
Lightning struck somewhere nearby and the resulting thunderclap brought my attention back to the storm. Intensely dark and roiling clouds were in a marked line as far as I could see to the northwest. Tendrils of cloud visibly swirled underneath the storm, and the entire line was moving rapidly southeast. Intense lightning and rumbling thunder accompanied the heavy rain. Violent and drenching, but it was also fast moving and would be gone soon. Lacking anything better to do except to enjoy the view while I continued to recover, I leaned back against the table and tried to take it all in.
Shortly I was aware of several presences behind me. My guardians had caught up with me. I could see them with my mind’s eye and even thus the beautiful and powerful trio managed to take my breath away. I refused to turn to look though. Somehow I knew I was not supposed to actually see them except in my dreams. I think I was afraid that if I looked, they would vanish and never return.
I am not supposed to believe in dragons, you see…it is just not conventional.
There was a feeling of expectation on the air—an atmosphere of tension unrelated to the storm. Clearly they were waiting for me. The next move was mine.
I looked at the burned paint on the picnic cover poles and wondered just exactly why I should not believe. I caught my conscious mind making up reasons in a mundane framework for the marred paint. Maybe it had been there already and I had simply not noticed it before. It was easy to rationalize the events I had witnessed to be the ramblings of an oxygen starved brain. Strange…dismissing direct experience for an easier, more rational explanation.
I thought about some of the incredible things I have seen in the world. Tornados, hurricanes, lightning, fire. Life created, and life snuffed out. I rubbed my neck and winced in pain as I recalled the recent ordeal, and the fact that I was still here. I thought about a friend, recently a heart-attack victim. Strange…I find it easy to believe that medical science can kill a man, rip the heart out his chest, replace it with one from another person, and then bring him back to life. I can believe that. Why should it be so hard to believe in my own spirit? Why should it be so wrong?
I have witnessed unfathomable cowardice and evil, and have seen acts of selflessness and courage. With just a few gallons of amber liquid I have taken a machine so high into the sky that I almost could not breathe and it took me nearly an hour to glide back down. A few more gallons and a flick of the wrist and another machine effortlessly carries me down the concrete and asphalt ribbons that crisscross this country. This magic is easy to accept. Why?
I reflected on some of the times I have experienced the magic…and the times I have surrendered to the mundane. I smiled as I remembered that I have watched dolphin surfing in the waves, and felt envious. When one saw me he stopped, approached, and clearly indicated that I should join him. He spoke no English…but he spoke nonetheless, make no mistake about that. “Fun!” he seemed to say. “Come on! Hurry or you’ll miss the experience!” was the clear message. Quite sometime later he also clearly told me it was time to stop. “Danger!” was the message as he herded me toward the shore, and I did not question it, did not even wonder why. It was his world, why should I question it? I accepted the magic completely that day. I did not surrender to the mundane. I could have dismissed the dolphin’s message as simply an animal making noise, but I did not. That was the best day of my life.
Why should I believe in all the things in this amazing world, and yet not have faith in myself, no belief in my own spirit?
It is a fundamental question. And for myself…a question only I can answer. I looked at the swirling clouds and watched a particularly amazing and breathtaking lightning storm travel across the heavens, lighting up the sky as it moved rapidly along the front. The thunder was so continuous that it was just white noise, but I could feel it in my bones and the trembling of the ground.
Finally I shrugged, mumbled, “The hell with it.” and turned to face the group. I have never particularly desired to be conventional.
They did not vanish.
The dragon spoke, her voice sending shivers of pleasure up my spine.
“That was an interesting trick you managed.”
I just smiled at the words. “Trick?” I got the distinct impression that spirit guides are not supposed to be caught by surprise.
The sinuous black dragon sounded distinctly perturbed. “Trick. Yes.” she cleared her throat. “I’m not sure that even I could pull that off.” Her head moved closer, her intense blue eyes looking through me. “What…” she paused for effect, “…did you do?” In a lower voice that still sent waves of pleasure through me she added, “What…” a pause again, “…do you know?”
I gave her my best innocent look. What did I do? What did I know? They were really the same question. If I concentrated just a bit I could clearly see the strands of light…clearly understand the map…clearly see the exits and the lesser known places where I knew could cross over. I grinned up at the jeweled dragon, winked. She already knew the answer to her question, but was not ready to admit it.
I did not answer her question. There was no need to. I looked fondly at the three companions. Despite, or maybe because of the unconventionality of it all, I am really glad, really blessed to have them in my life. The world is a fascinating and magical place, but the mundane aspect of it continually tries to crowd out the magic. The workaday world always threatens to dominate us…to consume us…to destroy us. With them in my life, it will have a harder time. It will not succeed. Life will continue to be…interesting…
At the moment I realized this, the dragon smiled, baring teeth in a view that would have scared anybody that did not know her. In her captivating voice she quietly said, “It is time for us to go. We will see you again.”
I stared deep into her blue eyes a moment. I could see the passion there, the magic, the storm. I watched the lightning behind me reflected in her eyes, looked closer, and then BANG! I was blinded and disoriented by an intense flash of light and explosion of noise.
I again found myself lying on the picnic bench with rain drenching my face. The wind was strong enough to shake the entire cover, and the rain was coming down in sheets. Lightning and thunder were so intense it was impossible to differentiate between the individual strikes. Night had fallen and it had grown completely dark beyond the storm.
I sat up and knew without looking that my companions were no longer there. There was no sense of loss at all, they will be back when I need them. Instead, I felt intently elated. I had learned something today. Really I had just confirmed it, as I have known it for years. I looked out at the storm, watched the lightning, thought about the web of lights…the map. I could still envision it if I thought about it. I watched the lights move along for a moment, then I looked to the lights of the cars moving through the storm along the highway below me.
I smiled intently. “Well, how about that…Life really is a road!”
And I have a map!
Careful not to jar the painful bruised areas, I walked out into the storm, got my stuff back together, and mounted the big Valkyrie cruiser. The rain and wind intensified, and lightning and thunder were startlingly close. I stopped at the top of the ramp, waited for a break in traffic, and then violently twisted the throttle. There was more life out there to experience. There was more to see. There was much, much more to the road.
I grinned, the Dragon roared, and we were gone.
Life is a Road…