Sunday, June 10, 2007

Big City Trippin'

To understand what I'm about to write, one has to have lived for a long period of time in a rural area. I am a Hick. Living in Bayview, Idaho, U.S.A. Rural living, especially in a beautiful area like mine has it's drawbacks, however few.

Last week I had to drive to Spokane, Washington. Did I mention that we Hicks get nervous when encountering more that three or four cars? Oh, and to complicate matters, we have only two seasons here in the Inland Northwest. Winter and Construction. We are, for those of you in the Southern Hemisphere, in the Construction Season now, which in a circuitous manner, brings me finally to the point of this story.

Heading for Spokane, Washington is bad enough in normal times, if we ever experience those again. Driving there without the aid of Interstate 90, takes some imagination, a good map and a crafty mind. You see, it wouldn't do to take a route that everyone else thought of, would it? Again, I digress.

Armed with map, two cups of coffee and great determination I set out for the V.A. Medical Center on the other side of Spokane. No breakfast, as I was not just scheduled for an eye examination, but lab tests too, which required fasting.

Sneakily, I eschewed the freeway in favor of Hwy 53, which turns into Trent, which ends at Division. Smooth sailing so far, that is if you like to drive at 35 MPH. Turning North on Division, I somehow managed to find Francis Street, amongst the hundreds of cars around me that were obviously trying to find a way to injure me. Turned left, turned right on Assembly. I was there. Got my Lab test in which a nice Young Lady proceeded to draw blood, and draw blood, and draw blood. Finally, I stood up, needing a transfusion and started to walk toward the exit. The Nice Young Lady then smiled at me, showing two rather pronounced teeth. Kind of like ...Fangs! Yes, they were Fangs. Suspicion confirmed. While I had to miss Breakfast, obviously she was not going to have to.

Staggered over to the Eye clinic and collapsed in the waiting room. Had a very nice exam which produced two results. Found out I was getting free glasses, and that my prescription wasn't that far off what I already had, excepting the start of Cataracts, which were just infants and nothing to worry about. Asking about how long I had to wait until I could drive, having had my eyes dilated, the nice young lady told me "when you become comfortable." She gave me those throwaway plastic sunglasses just in case, although she pointed out that it was a cloudy day.

I walked out toward my car, blinded by the clouds that were awfully bright. After a few minutes I discovered that I could see people and other cars, and even stop lights, which according to Doug Clark, (Spokesman-Review Columnist) aren't used by the locals much anyway. I proceeded with "The Plan." If I remembered correctly, although in the entire city of Spokane, there were only two operational entrance/exits to the freeway. "The Plan" came unwrapped.I had remembered wrong. Eastbound Maple Street on ramp was blocked off. I sailed a ways east, paralleling the freeway, when finally I decided to try for Trent again. Missed it, but went East on Mission which eventually found it's way into Trent. As I passed through the Gonzaga University Campus, I noticed some really loud tunes just ahead. I saw something I had never witnessed before. The trunk lid of the car ahead of me was flexing to the beat of something not of this world.

Well, I made it back safely, although I do have some unsolicited advise for those of you that have had your eyes dilated.You will not be able to read street signs. Such is a day in the life of a Hick from Bayview.

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