A Long Walk

Yesterday, in spite of the snowy conditions, my work remained open. Since I am committed to my job, I solemnly and stoically prepared for the trip. Gloves, hat, heavy coat: all would be needed to keep the deadly conditions at bay. I made sure that I packed plenty of food. I narrowly avoided starving to death on a similar adventure only a few weeks ago. I vowed that I would not let that happen again.

Emily decided to come along with me, since her bookstore had closed for the day and she had nothing else to do on that fateful day.

We bid farewell to Isaac and left the comforts of our apartment. It was 11am.

We marched through snow that was up to our knees. The blizzard had not quite abated, so snow and wind assaulted us on our long trudge to the bus stop. Unfortunately, our approach was blocked by snow drifts that towered over (Emily’s) head. We would have to walk a block to the next stop, where a clear path could be seen. But there was no bus. So we decided then and there to keep walking. A decision we would both live to regret.

The walk lasted longer than we anticipated. Sometimes…I think we are out there, still walking to that bus stop. I know that, in the darkest reaches of my mind, I am still walking that long walk.

I had vowed to get to work and I would keep that vow, no matter the cost. For forty minutes we walked toward Kenmore Station, all the time checking behind us for the bus. Emily’s spirits remained high, but I worried for both of our lives in this wintery deathland.

But then, our luck changed and the 57 showed up, scooping us up and carrying us along far more quickly than we would have been able to move on our own. It seemed salvation was at hand. Until we saw the police car that blocked the road, so close and yet so far from our destination. Emily and I looked at one another and made the decision to abandon the bus. We and twenty others left: lost nomads walking across white land. We passed a tree split in two by the weight of the ice upon it. Only careful movements kept the tree from falling on us and our lives were spared that day.

By the time we reached Kenmore Station, it was 12:30. By fortuitous fortune, the 60 bus was waiting there and we boarded. So began the second leg of our trip. We were almost there. Or so I thought.

But the driver of the 60 bus received new orders that day and she was told to abandon us at the Macy. She bid us farewell and we headed out into the snow one…last…time.

We pushed through snow that came up to our chests when we walked on the sidewalks. We walked in the road and nearly were taken to oblivion by passing snow plows. Through it all, we never stopped moving. We kept moving forward.

Then there, through the shadows of death, we saw the mall loom. Struggling now against still deeper snow drifts, we pushed on. I crawled on my belly, spitting out curses and hate at this mall that dared make me come in. I rolled down the snow bank, landing in the road. And still I came.

I stood on weary legs, my hands balled into fists.

With hatred in my eyes and fire burning into my very soul, I launched into the air and dropkicked the mall.

We had arrived.

Dylan Charles

2 thoughts on “A Long Walk

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