Across from some factory around mile 163 – December 11, 2012
“Why are we sliding sideways?”
Wally, it’s just a little slant.
“Are we camped on a playground slide? Was there an earthquake after you picked this spot? Are you actively avoiding comfort now?”
There aren’t any sandbars around here, it’s all concrete and channel.
“I miss Memphis.”
What are you like the princess and the pea or something?
“Don’t push me.”
“I remember that story. That’s the one where the queen wasn’t sure the princess was real so she made her sleep on a folded concrete mat at a 20 degree angle that gets splashed every time a barge goes by?”
That’s why we got the tarp.
“That explains being wrapped up like a giant taco. I thought it was some sort of performance art.”
I thought you’d be used to this after six-months.
“I thought I’d be in my own comfy bed after six-months. The earth has gone halfway around the sun and you aren’t even get off the Mississippi River.”
But New Orleans is only a two days away. Just look at that big salty over there, we’re so close!
That saltwater freighter, the big one.
“What are you talking about? That giant building across the way?”
That’s not a building.
“Quit messing around. Not a building, like I don’t have eyes. What is it then?”
It’s a ship.
“That thing moves!?…on the water?”
“We were paddling next to that thing? Are you out of your mind?”
Why do you think we stopped as soon as the sun went down?
“Did I mention how much I love this concrete mat? Don’t ever leave!”
We’ve got to. New Orleans won’t paddle to us.
“New Orleans sounds French.”
“Now it’s American?”
Now it’s New Orleans.
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
I don’t know, it just sounded good in my head. Don’t worry though, you’ll like it.”
Because they call it the Big Easy.