Last night I had a weird dream, another one of
those “let’s go to the movies” type dreams. It was one where I felt like I
watching everything happen, but I was watching myself act it out.
I woke up in my old “Townhouse”(since I mentioned
it, I am personally and morally committed to stating my hate and disdain of HOA’s,)
with that out of the way, let’s get my back to the wacky dream. I woke up like
any normal weekend morning, got dressed and I was getting into my car that preceded
the current car I’m driving, the piece of shit that it is, but that is for
other rants. So, it seems like the time frame is 8-10 years ago. Now this
former car wasn’t anything grand, a decade old low end used Mercedes Benz that
I picked up on ebay for $3800. It met its demise at an intersection after it
got the hots for a DHL truck and my inattention for a traffic light. Again,
that is for another story.
I get in the car and there is a present in the passenger
seat. It’s about the size of box a watch
would come in. It’s simply wrapped in metallic gold paper with a metallic royal
blue ribbon. I open it and the only
thing in it was a printed piece of paper with the following instructions, “Get
on I-77 north and drive, you’ll know what I’m talking about when you see it.”
I’m going all Clark Griswold at this point, “This
is crazy, this is crazy”, and while I was intrigued Christie Brinkley wasn’t
nude in a pool. There wasn’t a pool. But
again, I was intrigued. My thoughts were flipping between “who broken into my
car and left this”, and “what the hell is on I-77”.
So I pulled out of the community and headed
towards the interstate. I was hungry, felt like I hadn’t had anything to
eat/drink in quite some time, so even though it was an awkward turn for where I
needed to I headed to McDonald’s and ordered two sausage biscuits with mustard(making
sure to mention that I wanted the mustard on the biscuits) and a large
Coca-Cola without ice. There is just something different about a McDonald’s
fountain Coca-Cola as opposed to say one from a 7-11. I can’t explain it, but
as you are reading this, if you are ever suffering from a hangover, a Coca-Cola
from Mcdonald’s is a good starting point.
I go through the maze of poorly planned turns and
finally make my way to the interstate so I set the cruise control at
seventy-something and dig into the bag. I immediately get pissed, because I
have packets of mustard as opposed to the mustard already being on the biscuit.
At least I had the packets, but when you are specific with the guy at the drive-through
window, it chaps you a little bit anyway.
So, I slow down and pull off on the side of the road and flood each biscuit
with a packet and a half of mustard, put the packets in the bag and whip the
car back on to the road. I was by passing Mooresville and Statesville in no
I was driving, trying to pay attention to an unknown
(harder that it seems) and I saw a car parked on the side of the road. I
slowed, and the note was right, I knew it when I saw it. I slowed and pulled in
behind what appeared to be a Honda CRX, it looked like my first car, a car that
somehow sold for $500.00 after running laps in the Helltona 500 in it for
years. It sold me on the Honda brand, but with that said, I’m not driving one
today. Maybe I need to be. If I ever won a huge lottery I’d buy some land,
build a house, with a “Bat Cave”, I’ve mentioned that before, but I’m sure I’d
piss off someone at the DMV when I tried to track down every car my family
owned and put in a barn. I know that task would likely never be 100% complete,
but it would be worth a shot.
I walk up to the CRX, it was that ugly bright
red(I wasn’t a fan of it back then either), with the gray/silver skirt. It looks brand new. Who in the hell would
restore an ‘84 CRX, it’s not like it’s a 66 Mustang. The door is open, and there is another “present”
in the driver’s seat. I reach down and grab it, open it up and it has a Honda
key and another note with bullet points.
N to HWY 21 N, head towards Sparta
the bag out of your trunk
Um, okay, What bag? and
am I supposed to leave my car here? On mile-marker whatever? “This is crazy” is
turning into “This is freaky”, and still no Christie Brinkley, maybe she’ll
pass me in her Ferrari.
Still intrigued, I
go to the trunk of my “current car”, and open it and there is an olive/tan Jeep
duffel bag(used to have one of those too). It’s packed with a couple of changes
of clothes, some toiletries and a Glock .45(I do not own a firearm). This is freaky just made a right turn at “What
the fuck boulevard?”. There was a folded
note, “saying you might need this, you might not”.
My mind is spinning,
and freaking out and for some reason I whip out my phone and take some
pictures, and pull up the audio recorder and start describing the morning. You
never know, I might need it, I might not. I grab the bag, shut the trunk, lock
the car and head off to the CRX to continue the venture.
So, I pour myself
into the CRX after pushing the seat all the way back. It looks fully restored,
except the factory radio looks like the Sony I put in it years ago; I look back
and there is the speaker box a friend of my dad’s had made for me. This was not
one of those “piss everyone off at the traffic light” sound systems, but it was
an upgrade to what Honda offered in 1984.
The car had over 200,000 miles, and I had no way of telling if it was my
old car or not, sorry I don’t have the VIN#’s memorized and I didn’t carve Lori
or any other girls name into the frame. Oh and the band-aid someone once put on
the front was no longer above the swiveling headlight (that was fun when you’d
take a curve or make a turn).
I simply had to
believe it was my old car. It was far nicer than it ever was when I had it. It
seemed a bit quicker and faster too. That little front wheeled devil was fun in
the snow. I bypass 421 and in no time I was merging off of I-77 onto 21 and
four lanes soon became two lanes.
Driving to Sparta on
Highway 21 is something I would do at night from time to time. I loved the
curves and the flying up and down that mountain. I finally slowed down a bit
when I had a nightmare or two of flipping over the guardrail and not dying but
being stuck in a crumpled CRX and not being able to move; just being locked
down like you were in an MRI machine. My
claustrophobia wouldn’t do well with that. But I would try like hell to beat and bend my
way out of it.
I was gunning it, it
felt natural, so I reached for the radio and there was a cassette of Tom Petty’s
“Full Moon Fever” in the tape deck. Some asshole had done their homework. What is it they say? “When In Rome?, press
play and sing-along?” “She’s a good girl……………”
I pulled off at the
old overlook just to take it in. Spent a few minutes looking out into nothing,
but wishing it was night so that I could see the speckling of lights. I get
back on 21 and was approaching Roaring Gap, when I saw a man-made sign that
said “K turn here”. I did as instructed.
My heart fluttered.
It had been a number of years since I had been in this area. There were more
man-made signs with red arrows that I followed. Slowing as not to knock two
guys off the road as the crossed it in a golf cart. Roaring Gap was a bit of a
mountain retreat back in the day, likely still is. It has a handful of golf
courses in a compact area, with some homes having similar views as the
overlook. I knew a couple of people that had homes there, but couldn’t drive
straight to one if my life depended on it.
At one point some
friends worked at one of the golf clubs during the summer and would stay at “lodge”
during the summer, and from time to time there would be parties. It would be a nice place to have a house,
except for the “uppity” attitude of many that would “summer” there. You know
one the type, the ones that looked down at anyone they didn’t know like they
were a second-class citizen. I don’t think I could put up with that attitude no
matter the amount of money I had. Though it would be a nice area to invade, you
know throw enough money at them that they had to leave.
Another sign, this
one instructing me to veer left. I think I’m heading up to the lodge. Off to
the left is the lake, yeah this looks a bit familiar. From what I remember it was up on a crest near
part of the golf course, but you had some woods to go through to get back down
to the lake. It would make a nice setting for Friday the 13th part
The poker games were
somewhat legendary. It would be nice to turn 300.00 into 2-3k(Maybe one day I’ll
post when some buck-twenty-five rich kid pulled a pistol out after losing daddy’s
money). There were more houses built up, but it looked familiar. One final
sign, “Turn Left”, this has to be where the lodge was. Yep, there it is, single
lane road up through some trees. It was eerie being here after so many years.
The lodge was made
in the old log cabin style, and the location had a high enough elevation that
the Carolina summer nights weren’t miserable. Of course, there was a window
unit in every window in the place, so that had to help.
It hadn’t changed
much. I walked in and nobody was there. Walked down the center of structure and
looking off into each of the bedrooms. Nothing.
I notice what looks like blood on the floor and I hear some vehicles
pulling up outside. I can see the words “Sheriff” and “State Trooper” on the
front quarter panels.
I look into the
final room and I see a girl, hell a woman, I see her for the first time in a
dozen years or so, she hasn’t changed much, her breasts are larger, likely less
than 12 years old, but that happens. She’s naked, bloody and duct taped and
bound to an old wooden chair. She has a bullet hole in the middle of her forehead.
Had she not been sitting against a wall, I’m sure she’d be toppled over. I feel a panic and rage coming on as I hear
the squelch of a 3rd approaching law enforcement vehicle. I’m being
framed for murder.
This is where I wake
up, and my heart is beating fast, adrenaline is flowing, getting my wits about
me, realizing I’m safe at home. I reach and pick up my phone and see it’s not
even 6am yet, but my “night of sleep” is over.