Wandering in the Desert

posted in: 44 Cherry Street, Newsletter | 0

The small troop of campesinos trudged onward across the desert approaching the US border. They were hot as hell, hungry, and thirsty. Lorraine was doing her best to keep up, but the blisters on her feet were the size of walnuts. Every muscle in her body ached. She questioned her sanity with every painful step. Why did she leave the comfort of Chappie’s hacienda? She couldn’t remember any reason compelling enough to make her do what she was doing. She was dangerously close to running out of sunblock and more importantly, moisturizer, and was terrified that her perfect skin would be destroyed. She was seventy-five, but was able to pass for ten years younger because she had babied her skin for her entire life. Of course she always admitted to being fifty. The cost of one bottle of her treasured moisturizer was more than the weekly food budget of any of her fellow travelers’ whole families. She felt bad about that, but not bad enough to change her routine. She believed that when you look as good as she does, you can’t scrimp.

Extra Jumbo Face Mug by Jim McDowell

Over the course of their days of travel several disappointments hit Lorraine hard. First, her hoped for romance with Indiana never materialized. She had used all her feminine wiles, but he had not noticed her flirting. There must be something wrong with his eyesight, she thought, as she reached inside her shirt and hefted a boob that was slipping under the elastic of her bra. She stuck out her chest to show off her prodigious cleavage. “Your loss, Sucker!” she thought.

Lorraine by Ellen Phillips

Second, the food on the trip had not improved. She had hoped for some cold salads or at the very least, some good Mexican food, but cold tortillas were the main course. She had also expected some icy Dos Equis at the end of each day, but nada. She was glad she had smuggled some saltines in her bag when she was leaving the cafe, and she found some mini bottles of rum and a bag of pretzels at the bottom of her purse, left over from her last plane trip. Both of these she would pull out in private when she could find a moment to herself. There was definitely not enough to share. 

Small Cheese Boards made in BM $25

Finally, she absolutely hated these camo clothes she had been given to wear and planned to burn them when she was safely across the border, but was secretly grateful for the sombrero as the sun baked down and for the serape at night when it got so cold. Sadly, she had shed all her beautiful flowing flowered moo-moos as they marched on. The filmy fabric caught on the scrub undergrowth they encountered, and she was too hot to wear so many layers. She had simply removed the layers one at a time and tossed them aside in the desert. Now she had none left.

Yummy Palo Santo Room Spray

The travelers kept their spirits up by singing protest songs in Spanish, but Lorraine didn’t know any of these songs and felt left out. “Sing something everyone knows,” she called out plaintively. She began singing at the top of her lungs, “One hundred bottles of beer on the wall, one hundred bottles of beer. If one of these bottles should happen to fall…” She stopped because no one had joined her. “Come on, y’all!” she insisted. But no one joined in. These people were no fun at all.

Large handwoven plant holder $30

Suddenly Indiana issued a loud command in Spanish, and the travelers scattered and tried to conceal themselves behind the brush. What was happening? she wondered. From behind a scrawny tree, she could hear the sound of a vehicle approaching. What was this? she asked herself. Based on the terrified expressions on the faces of her fellow travelers, she knew that whatever was about to happen, it wasn’t good.

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