The bus practically vibrates as we head out of town to face our rivals for their homecoming game. The self-appointed DJ sits on the seat in the back of the bus, one hand on the volume knob and the other around his girlfriend. He was up half the night putting together this mixed tape and currently RUN-D.M.C is blasting out of the speakers. The energy is high this afternoon and raucous laughter erupts from the starters in the back.
I sit half-way to the front, a forced smile on my face, enduring the noise and re-thinking having volunteered to be the ball-girl for the varsity team. "It'll be fun! Then you can come to the away games and when I'm not cheering we can sit together." I look at my best friend as she adjusts her pleated skirt before sitting in the seat next to me and then roll my eyes as Aerosmith screams at us to "Walk This Way".
Three hours later, we're back on the bus, but the music is off. So were the games. Three losses for us, embarrassing losses with more than a few technical fouls, according to my clipboard. To have handed three wins to our rivals stings. It's a turkey for them, leaving us with only gutter balls.
In the flash of the headlights on the highway I slip on my headphones and hit play on my walk-man. In the silence I can finally enjoy my own music. Leaning back I close my eyes and Van Morrison ushers me "Into the Mystic".
Linking up with Write at the Merge this week - 264 words inspired two music videos from the my high school days. I still prefer Van Morrison over most anything else you might hear on the radio.
Linking up with Trifecta - inspired by the word: Turkey
She sits in the middle of the living room floor, chipped pink polish on her little toes and matching band-aids on each knee. On the carpet before her is spread a motley collection of pencils, markers, sticky notes, colored pencils and a box of Kleenex. A folder with an image on the cover of a kitty cat in a tiara sits propped on her lap. Permanent marker in hand, she scrunches her forehead, tongue peeking out between the gap left by two lost teeth, and adds her brand to the top right corner.
And a "Y" masquerading as a "T".
She sits back and admires her work. As she reaches for her new pencil bag, a grin dances across her face and the freckles on her nose sparkle. It's the Eve of the First Day of School!
Linking up with Trifecta - inspired by the word: Brand
I shove another Bacardi box into the growing stack; a veritable castle wall stands guard in our garage. Stepping back I brush my bangs back from my sweaty forehead, leaving a grey smudge above my left eyebrow. My hands are covered with newsprint from a dozen different headlines as I wrap and roll our life into careful little bundles and nestle them into vodka boxes and whiskey cartons.
Returning to the living room I find my kids sprawled on the floor, the excitement of packing having waned in the recent days.
"How much more packing do we need to do?" my eldest moans.
"Just a few more boxes, Buddy, then we can take a break and do something fun. We're getting closer with every box we pack."
A chorus of half-hearted "yeahs" fills the nearly empty house.
"Come on, kiddos, let's band together and tackle the laundry room. Then we can call it a day."
Their four bodies remain motionless.
"Maybe we could watch a show in a bit."
A few shoulders shrug.
"While we eat some cake and ice cream?"
Suddenly my weary packers are energized. I set an empty box on top of the dryer and we start filling it with hats, sunscreen, bug-spray and a random shoe.
"Mom? You do know it's only ten o'clock, right?"
Linking up with Write at the Merge this week - 222 words inspired by the picture above. Personally, I opted for some red wine, but I waited until a bit later. And a generous "thank you" to all the area liquor stores for their contribution to our moving supplies!
Linking up with Trifecta - inspired by the word: Bind