I went to a wedding the other day in South Texas.
If this sounds like a retread of a previous article, you’re obviously a good and loyal reader of my column, and God bless you.
(One day I’ll have a “thank you” reception, and there will be snacks and punch for everyone who’s pieced together enough clues from previous articles to know when and where to meet.)
It is not, however, a retelling but rather a sister story: the bride of this anecdote was and is younger sister to the young woman who brought me many miles south about a year and a half ago, inspiring two columns.
The previous tale of arriving involved many dead butterflies and more than a handful of split-open road-deer, a mobile home in motion and guardrail standing its ground. In the end, it was a good wedding and a lot of lovely, wonderful things happened also on the trip. I was young! But 23 is wont to skidoo as all ages are, impatient — it seems increasingly so — to get out your way and behind you.
(Alas, as it always is.)
Anyway, I got down to the site of the wedding without any much of anything going wrong at all, and because my phone didn’t have any music or any podcasts on it, I spent a lot of time driving to the horrorshow AM crackle-static-seance of rurality, and when I turned it off, I got the serenade of wheels on smooth Interstate 10 asphalt for the trip through Texas night. We might be better off without these damnable devices, I thought by the end.
And the next day I turned off my phone for the ceremony and got to walk around on a ranch dressed very vesty and nice in an area where there just had been rain and were flowers and spring, and future hopes seemed suddenly much more plausible there than the land of scraggle mesquite, dead grass and dust.
Again, it was a very fine wedding and reception, and if you can’t enjoy yourself watching two people be ecstatic and optimistic of their mutual not-yet lives together, what can you happy about be?
For the way back home I was all contemplated-out and enjoyed letting prior wi-fi downloaded podcasts fill up time and space in my brain for a good part of the first half of the trip — at least until I had a blowout and had to pull over on the middle-of-nowhere highway shoulder under tar dark midnight.
So I downloaded the flashlight app for my iPhone, got out the tire iron, jack and donut spare and got to work.
It involved much cursing and consternation, propping up the phone right so it wouldn’t fall over, but it worked.
I Googled the upcoming city for 24-hour tire places and called several, got directions to one. A guy said he might have the right size if I came by (well-along in years, he also lived there). But he didn’t. The other places I checked were all for 18-wheelers. So I used my phone to look up a hotel, got a room there and took my car the next morning to the nearest place for a new wheel. Then I drove home, listening again to quiet by the end.
If there’s a moral to this, and I’m not sure there is one, it’s very bland and obvious, so I won’t bother to say it.
Except to also say that weddings are very nice things.