10 November 2010 -- Astonishing But True (Curse Words, continued)
by, 11-10-2010 at 09:19 PM (331 Views)
Our story thus far....
I was going to continue the tale of how my friend and benefactor, Smudge, got stuck up on a cliff for many hours on Halloween day, nearly plummeting to his death before getting down, and asking me with apparent seriousness when he finally returned if I had put a curse on him.
However, there were, as we say in the "industry" (which industry? I'm not sure, I just like saying that! J) some DEVELOPMENTS.
I planned to put some diagrams that I had drawn in "MS Paint" to illustrate just how Smudge, when he was out climbing that day after he and I had had an argument, had gone up some cliffs he thought he'd been up before—he does keep meticulous maps of every place he goes, with all kinds of funny little place names on them like "Monkey Island" and "Crazy Canyon"—and found out that it was some weird place he'd actually never been, and that what he had thought was the top of the hill he was climbing was actually just a ledge with some trees growing on it, but I'm gonna tell that later. It's very interesting, but JUST LISTEN TO THIS, IT'S TOTALLY FLIPPED!!! Seriously.
I did manage to convince Smudge that his alarming mishaps on Sunday 31 October were probably simply a result of his being distracted due to annoyance (with me—we had had an argument) and overconfident. He hadn't actually fallen or hurt himself, only gotten some scrapes and bruises, so no real harm done, right? Once again I explained what a silly business it would be for me to curse someone that I lived in the same house with, even if I was really steamed at him. I reassured him that if I was ever really that angry with him, I would simply put some type of overdose in his "welcome home" drink, be nice to him until he stopped breathing, bury him in the woods, and continue to take care of his cats. He was relieved to hear that.
Thursday was my birthday (my 985th, if you must know) and so when the phone rang I figured it was Smudge calling to say happy birthday, because he typically leaves for work during the wee hours, while everybody in the house is still sound asleep.
It was him, all right, but he was telling me that he had had "a little accident" with the table saw at his job. (He's part of a small crew remodeling a warehouse for a medical marijuana growing facility and dispensary, by the way. Yes, I realize that's pretty unbelievable, but it's true. No, you can't come live with us.)
The little accident turned out to be an amputation of part of his hand. I wasn't there, but I guess it took two doctors and a technician two and a half hours to sew Smudge's hand back together, and his index finger above the knuckle is a total loss; they had to remove it. (I type op reports like that for a living, and hand surgeries are in my opinion among the most fascinating! I would have LOVED to have typed that surgical note! But I digress.)
As you may imagine, our homeboy Smudge was badly shaken up, but he's a trooper and he's going to be all right. It was his right hand so he can still play his guitar and swing a hammer and so on once everything heals up. The people at his job are super nice, they let him come back to work and he was only off for part of Thursday and Friday.
However, he has a huge bulky cast and dressing on his hand now and he can't drive his truck, so I've been giving him a ride to work. It's HELLA far, too. His house is way-way-way-way-WAY up in the hills, and his job is in downtown Denvoid.
It's pretty interesting, and though I have lived in Colorado for most of my adult life, and in the Denver metro area for most of that time, it's nice to be able to drive Smudge's truck (which is just a couple of years old and has a huge V8 engine in it, 4-wheel-drive, air conditioning, etc.) through all these old back highways and county roads getting him to work and getting back to the house. Yesterday, for example, there was totally thick fog coming out of the mountains at about 5 p.m., just before sunset. You know how people drive in fog—sometimes they get freaked out and just slam on their brakes in the middle of the highway. It's funny AND scary--like really, actually, 100% scary, because you can be tooling along on the highway with your windshield wipers going listening to "Roots Redemption" one second and on top of another car going over a cliff the next.
Also it's definitely the time of year for DEER. There are deer everywhere: White-tailed deer, red deer, mule deer, and ELK. Elk are huge and in a lot of Colorado towns they wander here, there, and everywhere basically at whim. Yesterday morning at about sunrise, driving through the town of Evergreen, Colorado, I saw an enormous 8-point buck elk calmly grazing in the front yard of a tiny house. The elk was nearly bigger than the house's entire porch. In Morrison, Colorado the other morning a frightened mule doe was dashing down the town's main street between the silent, still-closed shops and gas stations, big puffs of her panicked breath flying up in the cold air. (She didn't get hurt! She ran up past some buildings and then made the hill, and disappeared into some bushes.)
These are all roads and towns that I got really used to since moving to Colorado. When I started riding motorcycles in the 1980s that gave me an even better opportunity to explore all the alternate roads and small towns all over the State, not just in the vicinity of Denver.
Since moving to the Eastern Plains area of Colorado I had lost touch with that whole vibe, however. All of my road trips over the last 10 years or so have been going East; I'm way more familiar with places like Hannibal, Missouri, and Springfield, Illinois, etc., now, but I had forgotten what it's like to motor from Deckers to Woodland Park on Rampart Range Road, or to take the hairpin turns on Highway 73, the so-called "high-grade road" that runs through Pleasant Park. (I have always liked Pleasant Park so much that it is the "home" setting for my series about Magician Zero; that's where she lives after the apocalypse, in the ruins of an abandoned ranch.) (And NO, that's not where Smudge's house is. Nowhere near.)
So anyway yesterday (Tuesday) after dropping Smudge off at work I thought I would stop by a place I've probably driven past hundreds of times but never actually looked at, though I've often wanted to: The "dinosaur ridge " scenic drive that used to connect Alameda Avenue to Morrison Road—VERY close to the world-famous "Red Rocks Amphitheater", in fact it's directly across the street. It's been closed off to traffic, though you can still walk and bike there. I don't know why they closed it and I'm too lazy to do research, but I imagine it probably has something to do with people collecting rocks and fossils from the area, and maybe using it as a way to sneak into concerts at Red Rocks for free…? I dunno, but I parked the truck under the eaves of the hogback and me and my little dog Bentley hiked up there. (Here's a picture of BEST DOG IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD Bentley! He goes everywhere with me except on my bike.)
So yeah, it was about 0630 hours I think? Maybe a little later, maybe a little earlier. It was pretty cold and the wind was blowing and I was just wearing a skirt and my boots and a hoodie, but I thought that if it was too cold I could just go back.
Ok, I have to stop here and post this, but I will come back and tell you what I found on the ridge later!
~~~ yours in Chaos, Scarlett