Breaking Up With Fish Hatchery Road

#500WordsEveryDay prompt: to write about a place you are familiar with; in this case, I chose to breakup with that place. Definitely a first draft, but here it is:

Breaking Up With Fish Hatchery Road

The woman on my right shoulder is snoring. Softly at first, little snorts and sputters. Ten minutes pass and the light snoring turns to a mucus-filled growl. My shoulders have caved forward, a futile attempt to take up less space in my seat. And it’s here, supporting a nameless woman’s sleeping body, and hiding my discomfort in a novel, that I think of you. Remember my first day of Kindergarten, when I came home from school friendless and weeping? You led me to the tree house in the woods just beyond the yard. You knew long before I did that all the comfort I needed was in the pages of the books that covered the hand-built floor. I left you last night. When I went, I kidnapped all the words that should’ve been said. Now, 2,000 miles east and 1 mile above the Atlantic, I’m giving them back to you.

——

I sleep in a smaller bed now; life itself feels small over here. Less room on the roads, less food on the plates at dinnertime. But less is more, isn’t it? There’s more room to think, to breath, to be. When I saw you today, I realized you would never fit in here. During my morning jog I got lost in a nearby cul-de-sac, when I slowed to wipe sweat from my eyelashes. When I reopened my eyes, you were there right in front of me. You looked different than the last time I saw you. A little unkempt. Slightly smaller, have you lost weight? I know you well enough to see that you’ve convinced yourself that you are unloved. I hope you know that isn’t entirely true.

——

The elderly man on the bench next to me hasn’t spoken, except for a whispered, “Good day.” We are sharing the million-dollar view, splitting the profit equally; mine in my writing and he, in his unfaltering grin. The birds do the talking for us. Until twenty minutes later, when he thanks me for my company and shuffles along the pathway, back the direction he came. Life here is simpler, slower, purposeful. The sidewalks in town aren’t filled with those busybodies late to class, rushing to a meeting; nor are they in the constant hustle I once was, back when boosting my resume dominated my free time. Can’t you see that I had to leave?

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