Thursday, July 26, 2012

Triumphant Return

Well it's been two days now since I've escaped from the death grip of Texas. Don't ask me how I managed that because it felt like the entire state was trying to kill me near the end. I've already mentioned the ungodly heat. It was so awful and humid I'm still surprised I wasn't cooked like a Thanksgiving turkey the moment I stepped outside. The air was so thick with vapor that I felt like I could cut it with a knife on an especially bad day. It was like being in some prehistoric jungle, like Jurassic Park. So it was only appropriate that huge, blood-thirsty insects would thrive there. I was bitten four or five times every day by grasshoppers as big as my hands. And there were scorpions. They didn't bite me but they kept looking at me with their beady little eyes like they wanted to.

Oh, it wasn't just small crunchy animals that wanted to kill me; I got attacked by dogs too. See, every so often I would go for little walks in the evening. One day someone left their gate open, so when I walk by, thinking everything is fine and good, swarms of angry dogs can bolt out to tear me limb from limb. The first time it happened they just barked at me and ran around in circles.

Yes, the first time. It happened a second time, but the second group of dogs were more belligerent. Thankfully I was able to power walk away before they could catch up with me. But after that I didn't go on too many of my walks anymore. I figured that was the neighbor's way of warning me that they didn't want me creeping around anymore.

So I narrowly avoided the trained attack animals, but Texas wasn't done trying to kill me. It still had it's most potent weapon at it's disposal: flash flooding. Because the land is so flat there's nowhere for all the water to go when it rains. This is bad enough, but it doesn't just rain there; the skies open up and huge torrents of water come pouring out to drown the land. So there I was, sitting pretty inside, pretending there aren't murderous animals outside when suddenly the house was surrounded by nearly a cubic meter of water on all sides.

So much wind was buffeting the house that I was afraid it was going to tip over and then we would all be head first in the freezing cold water and hailstones. Thankfully it wasn't the house that tipped over, that honor belonged to a big aluminum shed next door. We heard a crashing sound outside, so we all ran to the window to see what was happening. What we saw was a huge red sheet of metal tumbling around outside, threatening to destroying everything it touched.

Now, when a jagged sheet of twisting metal is rolling around the natural instinct would be to run and hide, waiting for the wind to die down so it be dealt with safely. But Mother wasn't having any of that, instead she ran out into the rain because...

...well we weren't really sure why. But she ran outside and under the porch of Lou's shed. She stood there for a while because I think her previous plan of stopping it with her body wasn't looking to good anymore. In any case everyone relatively unharmed. I say relatively because Mom was suffering from a severe case of the "looking silly in front of the children".

Besides nearly dying we had fun going to the Natural Bridge Caverns. I always knew I would be most at home deep in the crust of the Earth, creeping around dark, damp caves. I'm serious, if I could get away with it I would live in a cave. I think I'm naturally subterranean. We also went to see the Alamo but big whoop right? The Ripley's Museum was right across the street and it had this crazy hallway. It was a metal walkway surrounded by a rotating tube, painted black with little white dots so it looked like I was walking through space. That's cool enough in itself, but the tube spun, upsetting the internal equilibrium of anyone inside, making it feel like they were about to fall off the walkway at anytime. Of course this wasn't really the case and anyone watching from outside the rotating tube would just see a very foolish looking person stumbling around drunkenly.

I want to try and replicate the illusion in a map because it would just be so cash.

All in all, I had fun in Texas, even if I said I wouldn't before I got there. It's just such a bizarre, deadly place that I think it was inevitable I would assimilate into it's culture. I felt myself becoming one with the madness. The endless fields of corn and Whaddaburger restaurants became a security blanket of sorts.

But one thing I could not get used to was Buc-Cee's. See, Texas is home to the largest gas station in the United States. I didn't know this at first so I was confused why there were all these billboards with this ridiculous looking beaver mascot everywhere. There was no explanation for it, but it was absolutely everywhere; on people's hats and shirts, billboards, everything. And because no one ever tells me anything I didn't get any explanation for what it meant. Eventually we actually did go to this Buc-Cee's place ourselves. As it turns out, it was this ungodly, enormous gas station, with more than sixteen pumps. And a deli section. And a gift shop. I could not deal with that.

"It's just a gas station!" I kept yelling. "It doesn't need any of this!" But no one could hear me, Mother just kept telling me to get a Buc-Cee's shirt or else she would cry. Eventually I decided to just try and ignore it. It really was for the best, because my mind would break trying to contemplate it.

Well that's all for now. But before we go, remember: Don't Shake The Baby!


mom said...

Ive been waiting for this update. of course I giggled thru out. Im surprised you didnt eloborate more on how texas tried to kill you more. dont forget the wasps, the fire ants, ETC. hehehe I had a fantastic, great time with you Tyler :-)

Shadgrimgrvy said...

Daw, thanks for having us. But yeah, I guess I forgot all the ants and wasps. I got distracted by all the OTHER things trying to kill us.

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