Fifteen miles of washboard road stood between The Booth and us. We covered
it quickly, averaging about 40 mph, and only bounced off the ceiling
a couple of times as we slammed through big rain cuts in the road.
feel we were getting closer, but we got a little bit disoriented about
halfway in. We came to a fork in the road, took it, and then realized
we’d taken the wrong tine. We realized our mistake not because of the
map, but a landmark of far greater authority: telephone wires. There
they were, marching into the distance, marching to The Booth, leading
us on as surely as the Sirens led the sailors.
the road following the telephone wires, faster, ever faster. We approached
each rise in the road, certain we were about to see The Booth, then
crested the rise to see yet another rise ahead of us. The tension mounted.
we crested the final rise. There it was in the distance, gleaming in
the sunlight, beckoning us on.
it just as we came upon a turn in the road, a turn drifted deep with
sand. I was so excited I involuntarily jerked the wheel into the turn
and the Cruiser broke traction and started to drift. I corrected, but
couldn’t take my eyes off The Booth. The drift turned into a full-fledged
power slide, but still I couldn’t take my eyes off The Booth.
down, eyes locked, sliding sideways at speed toward the edge of the
road, visions of a deadly desert cartwheel dancing in the back of my
mind, I steered into the slide and tried not to kill us. Steve never
made a peep, never made a move to brace himself, never did anything
but gape at The Booth. We weren’t afraid. Somehow we knew The Booth
would protect us. It hadn’t called us all this way to have us die at
the wheels slammed back into traction, the slide stopped, and we powered
on through the final quarter mile to The Booth. Our exhilaration grew,
but then was dashed as we got closer and closer, close enough to see
that the phone was NOT off the hook.
driven all this way for nothing?