May is an interesting month for me. Well, it’s a month, I don’t actually know how interesting it is but I did make two life-changing decisions in Mays. Not this May, other Mays. So in May I can, but don’t really, celebrate the anniversary of my move to Los Angeles. And I can, but only sort of, celebrate my wedding anniversary. The two are, of course, interconnected. I did move to Los Angeles 9 years ago in order to live with my fiancée, otherwise I would be…somewhere else. And we did get married one year later, but we did that in New Jersey, so although it is a life changing event, I’m not going to write about it because he has no way to defend himself.
So, when I decided to move to L.A. I packed my stuff; hired movers to put it in a truck and haul it cross-country. Then I packed some more stuff, crammed that and my best friend in my little Escort and we set off. This is pretty much what I remember. We drove to my parent’s house so I could say good-bye to them, we drove to her family’s house so we could say good-bye to them and then we went to Burger King. I seem to remember having chicken nuggets in the shape of dinosaurs. As we stood in the Burger King waiting for our order so we could get back in the car for a life-changing journey, the grill caught on fire. The decidedly non-Hispanic girl at the counter saw the flames and said very casually, over her shoulder, to the decidedly non-Hispanic fry guys, “Fuego. Fuego.” No one seemed to take notice of her not-very-alarming alarm and I figured that hey, this is Burger King, they must have grease fires all the time. But, a few minutes later, when the fry boys noticed the flames shooting up the wall, they freaked out and…well, they put the fire out. I don’t actually remember how. Then one of them yelled at the counter girl, “Why didn’t you say there was a fire?” and in her most disgusted, most New Jersey high-school-girl-with-an-attitude (and believe you me, New Jersey high school girls can give you some wicked attitude) voice, she said “Uh, DUH! I said FUEGO! That’s like Spanish for FIRE.”
This was the auspicious beginning to my life-changing journey.
The trip itself turned out to be a lot of fun. We scheduled our time so we could take little tangents off the route and see things like…oh, Tampico Illinois, birthplace of Ronald Reagan. Neither of us are fans of Ronald Reagan, we just thought it would be fun to see. We were pretty much wrong. Do not blink as you drive through Tampico. You will miss it. We also saw some iron crosses in the middle of a cornfield, the starting point of the Pony Express, a giant teepee that housed a restroom which precipitated many “pee-pee in the tee-pee” jokes and the giant freaking dinosaurs outside of Palm Springs that caused me to pretty much wreck my car (but the damage would not become evident for almost a month at which time my car would simply stop and then would cost me $500 to fix…stupid dinosaur).
Oh we had adventures, but since I don’t have very many now, I suppose I should save some for another time. Or not. I guess they aren’t all that interesting if you are not me. Oh well.
Happy Anniversay to me anyway.