I will be on a road trip today.
Actually, my body will be in a training for the next two days at work. But in my mind, I am on a road trip. I'm in the backseat of a warm car on a rainy day. Three friends are on the trip with me, but I'm sitting quietly in the backseat staring out the window.
Music is playing on the car stereo, and everyone has a hot cup of coffee (I'm spiking mine with a little flask of whiskey). We're all at peace and enjoying the warmth of our friendship and mutual love.
The others comment on landmarks and billboards. They chat about people back home, and they talk about all we'll experience at our destination. But I'm silent as I reflect on all the people who have come and gone in my 39 years.
I think about Jackie, the girl I almost asked to marry me. I wonder how she got on with her life after I disappeared. Now I understand what she must have felt. Having someone disappear is the worst feeling.
I think about CT and our seven years together. I think about Kody, the first boy I kissed. I remember my crush on Patrick and my love for Pony and my fascination with Michael. I think about Jose and Brad and Henry and others who wanted me to love them and, although I tried, I never could.
I think about my family - both biological and chosen. I think of AP and AA and the way I've been welcomed into their home. I think of my friends at work, Ms. Karma and Juju and The Math Whiz. I reflect on The Handsome Prince and the intricacies of our friendship and all we've been through. I think of "The Mad Sheep" - my college buddies. Their influence in my life still runs through my every thought and deed.
As the rain falls outside the car, I think of Tim, who died a few years ago. Tim was a friend from college, younger than I, who died from a brain tumor. He was taken too soon. He bought me tickets to see Les Miserables and went with me to the show and laughed at me when I started crying at the opening chord of the overture.
I think about the guys I knew for one night - the ones who never even knew my last name. But I remember the way I felt with each one of them. I think about the many, many people I've met through Hot Toddy's Toaster Oven - the ones I've met in person, the ones who e-mail, the ones I've talked to on the phone. So blessed, I am.
Of course I think about Thor too. I think about how he made my heart feel - so different from anything I've known before, and I don't know if anyone will make me feel that way again. I look out the window and wonder where this car is headed. I am on a road trip to somewhere unknown. Maybe somewhere on the other side, I'll meet up with Thor again. Maybe I won't ever see him again. But he's here now in my heart, along with hundreds - literally hundreds - of others I love and always will.