I was sitting in the bar when the flight tickets were confirmed. I’ll be going home for the first time in just under four years. It was October of 2006 the last time I was back, and it was July of 2003 the time before that, and the time before that it was December of 1999, and aside from the week long constipation I got back in 2003, the most vivid memory I have is of watering my brother’s lawn. He would be at work, and I’d have the whole day to myself with nothing to do but water the lawn. How good does it feel to take off your shoes, dig your toes into the grass, and feel that cool water coming out of the hose? And I had nothing to do, absolutely nothing to do. No phone calls from real estate developers trying to sell me a house I can’t afford, no emails to send out, no spam to clean out of the website, no employees to pay, nothing. I had absolutely nothing to do, but water the lawn and occasionally take a deep sip of that beautiful liquid that flowed from the garden hose. How good does that water taste? Now all I can think about is going back to water the lawn. Doctor*, you see I was talking to this girl at the bar, and she said that I would be bored of watering the lawn after a little while—that I would be bored of living that life after doing it again and again, time and time again.
She had lived that life and one day she decided to give it all up, sell her house, quit her “regular” job, and pack things up to come out here. She wanted excitement, and all I want to do is to have it as she had before giving it all up. All I want to do is to live her “regular” life, to have a nine to five job, to have a tiny little house. After all, haven’t I experienced enough excitement over the years? Isn’t it time to settle in? The German guy next to us was making loads of exclamation marks at one of his potential clients. Then the French crew swaggered into the bar. “Then again, haven’t you worked hard all of these years to fine your niche?” she asked. Yes, she was right, but I think that because of that, I would be able to appreciate watering the lawn that much longer. She shook her head, and gave me a silly grin. You’ll be sick of it within a month and you’ll run back to listen to that German guy, to drink with the French dudes to talk the talk and walk the walk. I know I will, but let me dream about my brother’s lawn a little more will ya?
*I ripped this style off of Philip Roth, just for the record.
By Tim Hoerle