We hit Roseville and you just can't take it anymore.
"My legs feel like they're going to murder the rest of my body for letting them sit still for so long," you say, arching your back and taking a deep breath that is converted into a chasmic yawn. "Do you mind if I drive?"
"No problem. I wanted to try to write, anyway." I hit the blinker--as any drivers worth traveling with d0--and pull to the shoulder. I leave the keys in the ignition and switch on the hazard lights.
You pour yourself out of the car and stand up straight. You crack your neck and it pops like a bandoleer of bottle rockets. Even over the hissing whooooooooosh of passing cars flying by at a presumed average of 75 MPH, I can hear your spine crickle crackle like crawdads in hot oil.
We both come around to the front of the car, but you don't let me pass. You throw your arms around my neck and press up against me like pen to paper. Your mouth rests against my neck and I can feel you smile.
Neither of us moves.
We're scarecrows keeping watch over a cornfield.
We're sunflowers blooming at the feet of giants.
We're tomato plants growing up the side of cheap metal brackets.
We're snapdragons catching wind in our open mouths.
We're Aurora Borealis leaving a streak of light across a California sky.
We're crisp winter runoff coming down from a snowy mountain, revealing its true colors.
We're a pile of crunchy leaves demanding to be leapt into.
You pull back and dot a quick kiss on my mouth like you've just initialed my lips. Your head tilts up and your eyes squint when they're shown the sun.
"I don't really want to drive," you whisper. "I just wanted to hug you." We each climb into and shut our respective doors.
"I miss you when you're far away," you sigh, grabbing my hand and slipping your fingers between mine, resting our tangled digits on the empty cupholders sitting between us.
"I'm only, like a foot away."
"I know," you say with a grin. "It sucks."
I can't resist a smile of my own and I turn my head to the lanes of traffic and merge successfully. We get back up to a cruising speed and I start looking at the scenery. Somehow, despite the season and the brisk chill that February has brought the Bay Area, there are a bunch of trees still holding onto their branches.
We pass a tall one on our right and I notice that the leaves are the color of your eyes.