BOTTOM LEFT: The card that Eliza gave to me in her care package;
BOTTOM RIGHT: My last sunset on Wrightsville Beach.
It was one in the morning and there was no way everything was going to fit in my car.
I was already supposed to be on the road with my buddy, Jordan, signaling the start of our two-week, cross country trek from Wilmington, North Carolina, to Los Angeles. Jordan, however, had not returned my last few texts, we were already six hours later than we had originally planned to leave, and I had only just now packed the last bit of my things, which conveniently would not fit into my car. I was getting desperate.
A week ago, when I shipped five boxes to L.A. to my cousin and packed all of my furniture in a storage unit, I had thought that my Honda Accord would be more than sufficient for the rest of my stuff. What I had not planned, however, was said Accord breaking down during the mere two-hour drive to Raleigh to say goodbye to my mom. In an act of desperation and fear that I would be stranded in the middle of the desert on my way to Cali, my mother gave me her Honda Civic instead. Good news was that it had considerably less miles on it; bad news was that it was also considerably smaller.
This became clear to me only now, when I was debating whether or not I really needed my Betsy Johnson bag full of hair products. As I was playing car origami, my best friend Eliza pulled up with her boxer and my goddaughter, Gracie.
"We have a problem," I told Eliza as Gracie immediately bounded forward to lick every inch of me that she could get her tongue on. "My ish won't fit."
"Hmm...I've moved three times in one year, I got this," Eliza promptly replied.
"Thank goodness. I was getting anxiety looking at it."
"Here," Eliza said, handing me a bag full of goodies, "This is your and Jordan's care package for the road trip."
Said package was fully equipped with granola bars, gummy bears, fortune cookies, kids sunglasses (I'm not sure why they were kid sized?), mixed CD's, and eight envelopes labeled with the cities that we were planning on stopping at.
"Awww! This is awesome!" I really was going to miss her. We had been best friends ever since we bonded over a granola bar and a high heel in Interpersonal Communications three years ago.
Just then, Jordan pulled up beside Eliza's car. There were a few reasons why I chose to do my road trip with Jordan. One, I knew that we could spend two-weeks together without one of us pushing the other out of the car on the freeway. Two, he had an infectious personality and could make friends easily. Three, he had nothing else to do. Also he was recently out-of-the-closet and I thought that the trip would be a good way for him to freely revel in his sexuality without the pressures of Bible-belt Wilmington. Because I'm just that kind of a friend.
"Hellur!" Jordan yelled out to Eliza and I as he hauled his small duffel bag out of his car. I had told him in advance that him and his luggage would be constricted to only the passenger's seat, as I had to fit my entire life in the rest of the car.
"We don't have room for that," I told him, pointing to his duffel. "And what took you so long?"
Smiling widely, Jordan pulled out what turned out to save our lives and sanity for the next two weeks from his jeans pocket.
"Praise jah!" I screamed, and clapped my hands like a little girl. It was like Christmas come early. "Alright, I guess we can fit your duffel bag."
"No, you have so much more room now!" Eliza announced, finally popping her head out of my car.
She had completely rearranged my things that I had before haphazardly thrown into random nooks of my new car. She had also made the decision that I did not need four pillows, or my bathrobe, or an ironing board, or a second laundry hamper that was filled with hangers. "You can buy all these things in California– you're going to L.A., not a deserted island!" she reminded me.
This was true. Plus I could now see through my rear view mirror, which is a definite plus.
I made a quick scan of the house to see if I missed anything, said goodbye to the roommates, hugged Eliza and petted the hell out of Gracie.
"Well, I guess this is it." I said awkwardly.
"This isn't goodbye, this is just see ya later bitch," Eliza reminded me before she drove off in her car.
"You ready?" I asked Jordan as I turned on the Civic.
"Let's get this party started!" Jordan replied, after putting his "spirit" rocks on the dashboard of the car.
Here goes nothin', I thought, as I put the gear into drive.
L.A.– here we come.