Obviously there are many, but a text / email conversation that I had with my husband this morning really highlighted one huge difference between us—he lives in “effed up weird-land” and I don’t. Well… not his version of “effed up weird-land” anyhow.
On the way in to work this morning, I saw a dead body in the road. It’s my second. The first was a child. I don’t talk about that; I think about it a lot, but I don’t talk about it.
Not that it was much better, but at least this one looked to be an adult. Blue lights were flashing everywhere; police were directing traffic… a bag with its contents spilled out over the road. It was all like a scene from a nightmare.
Thankfully, the police had the body under a sheet but it looked as if the person had been hit by a bus as there was an empty bus parked up and switched off and the driver was speaking to police and looking quite shook up.
Anyway. I sent N this text:
Me: You know it’s not going to be a good day when you see a dead body on the way 2 work.
N: Omg where?
Me: Right by the (place omitted due to my own personal privacy as it’s near home). Buses on diversion. Looks like someone was hit at the crossing by a bus.
N: Wow… I’m gonna look.
Me: You can’t see anything unless you’re on the top deck. They’ve got the body surrounded by cars and there’s a sheet.
N: I’ll grab the bus.
Me: Ok but you’ll be going out of your way.
N: I know… but it’s an excuse to get a coffee… so like totally dead?
Me: No. Partially. What the f*** do you think? That’s the difference between us. I’m upset and you’re all “omg let’s turn this into an exhibition! Cool!”
N: God, sorry. It’s hard to tell when someone is upset on a txt message. It’s not an exhibition… it’s just fascinating. Sorry I’m interested.
Because it’s just easier to say OK and let him think he’s right. I mean, should I be overjoyed about seeing a dead body? How is it fascinating or exciting or anything but horrible? I don’t even like going to hospitals or funerals (who does?). I don’t get it.
All I could think about was that this person had a family… a mom and dad at least, perhaps even a spouse and children. It’s a dangerous crossing anyway, with cars/buses/cyclists running red lights all the time and pedestrians dashing across the street at random. Something really should be done in that area. What a horrible depressing start to the day.
On the plus side, if there is one in this horrible situation, N was in such a rush to get out and see the dead body that he left the house with his pyjama shirt on. And he went to work like that. Duh. He had to turn around and go home, change and come back and ended up being late. And he got made fun of for it. So it definitely doesn’t all come out clean in the wash, but at least it’s something.
There are days when I’m in love with this city, totally and completely, and could see myself here for another few years. But most of the time? I can’t see myself here another hour, much less another day. I wanted so badly to get away from Kentucky when I was growing up—live in a big city and have a snazzy job… but now? Now all I want to do is go back and be… get ready for this revelation… a teacher. I guess it’s like they say in The Wizard of Oz—“there’s no place like home”.
The more and more I think about it, the more and more I think my life parallels that story.
But that’s for another time.