His high pitched shrieky howling is on my last nerve. It’s before 6am on a Sunday morning, not that he gives a shit of course, being unable to tell time much less understand what it might mean for the people in his neighborhood, and I have the window open while trying to write a cover letter for my manuscript submission. Truth be told I do not know if the dog down the street losing his marbles is a boy or a girl but for some reason my first instinct with dogs is to think they are male and cats female, which I am certain is problematic in ways I’m not quite sure of but should be, but it’s early and I’m only one cup of coffee in, and again with the dog and its relentless yapping. Is it in a yard? Bring it in and give it food, christ. Do some fucking thing.
My Sunday morning tarot reading tells me that a chapter of my life has now come to a close. This explains a lot about how I feel lately, to be honest. Last night we had dinner at an outdoor bar-restaurant which used to be where I would go as a young thing to get drunk and hook up with boys. The place has been renovated but only just enough for it to feel a bit more sophisticated and slightly less seedy than it once was. Still, the ghost of twenty-something me was there in the sticky hardwood floors and the giant wrap around bar that took up the entire front room. The guys throwing darts and speaking too loud and too sloppily could have been the same tools as were there twenty years ago. Sex and cigarettes, booze and lust and an idiotic kind of intoxicated plea for the return of innocence. Some things never change I guess. Even as we shed our old selves and slip into our new ones, we all carry with us our own hungry ghost.
I don’t miss the way it was and I wouldn’t wish its return for anything in the world. But the uncomfortable pangs of nostalgia are as real as the natural human instinct to pine for the cheap thrill of dollar beers and messing around in the parking lot with a sexy guy you’d never be able to pick out of a line up after the buzz wears off around sometime in the evening the following day which you’ll inevitably spend face down on a mattress ingesting cold pizza and cursing your idiotic – and for some inexplicable reason, repeated – poor life decisions.
The dog down the street has suddenly quieted. I hope he’s okay and I’m glad he isn’t mine. I’m fond of having fewer and fewer responsibilities as the days roll on by. My kid is grown. My dogs were gorgeous and now they are wherever the spirits of dogs go to frolic in the soft grasses of eternity. The day job is the job and it stays where I leave it at 4:30pm.
I used to care what those guys back in the day thought of me. I used to need them to find me attractive and all the rest of the silliness I held in such high esteem as only a young lady was brought up to do whilst being shamed for it all the while. If the ghost of past me could see me now what would she think? She’d think I was such a fucking cliche. Married in suburbia surrounded by dogs, lawn mowers, and expensive SUVs. Lacing up my running shoes on an early Sunday morning when most people are sleeping in like normal. Headed god knows where but headed there faster than I, or she, ever could have imagined.