December 14, 2005

big brother and the big dipper

Abilene, Abilene prettiest town you ever seen people there don't treat you mean in Abilene
every year, when i was very young, my mother would drive us from our home in houston to my grandparent's in abilene. the drive was long, probably eight hours, but tradition was mired in it.

we'd head west out of htown on i-10 and take old 36 all the way. we would see towns like brenham, temple, gatesville, hamilton, rising star...this was our ride, only ours was doo doo brown. the mercury cougar, ain't she a beaut?

see that back window? my brother and i would lie side by side in the ginormous back window ledge, staring up at stars our city eyes had never seen. seat belts? what were seat belts back then? this was the glorious seventies, the populace was invincible.

all the way, magic in the car. my mother, driving along, pointing out santa birds. in our family, santa had a fleet of birds that would fly back to the north pole and report to santa as to which kids were doing what, progress reports to help finalize the good and bad lists. birds being everywhere, we were in constant view of the little narcs. and although my brother and i could never get along for eight hours straight, we surely tried. by the time we were on that long drive to abilene, we had very few days to perform for the santa birds.

i remember a sort of early religious confusion. it's all about Christ's birth, but do you pray to Santa? hmmm. somehow the two great mysterious men shared the most pivotal birthday of the year. i never understood the connection, but i prayed to both just in case.

despite the rust and danger of the seventies, i'd give my right eye to be back there this year. riding in that window with my brother, begging him to show me the big dipper before father sleep took hold.

Posted by shoe at December 14, 2005 09:11 AM | TrackBack