Sunday, March 22, 2009

State Memories Project: Idaho

Swankette and I went to Boise on the original Minor League 4th of July Baseball Trip. We’d attended a game in Spokane on July 4th and then drove into Idaho for a game the next day.

We took the scenic route. I drove for a while, then Swankette drove. For whatever reason I was quite tired, and tilted my seat back a bit so I could catch a quick nap. I briefly roused in a beautiful resort town on a lake…a map tells me it was probably McCall. I got a nice sense of the gorgeousness of Idaho, and snuck a peek at my girlfriend, who was driving while I slept. There was something undeniably protective about that moment, and I felt safe. So I fell back asleep, happy to have had that two-second look at Swankette and the lake.


Chris Snethen said...

Boise Idaho. September 1995.

I was in town to retrieve my stuff from a storage locker. I'd left town in December 1994 after a disastrous attempt at living on my own for the first time. Because I had to move quickly, as I was but one step ahead of my psycho soon-to-be-ex-girlfriend, I'd stashed nearly everything I owned in a Public Storage in Meridian where she would never find it to burn it. And I left.

The heat was finally off by the following Fall and I arranged to come back to town to visit my friend Simon and his new bride. On the second night, it happened.

Simon and I went to a Mexican place downtown. The name and location have long since faded from memory. We went for dinner and then a few drinks.

A few drinks turned into a few more. Simon, sensing where we were headed, stopped early and sat back and watched as his friend went for a ride with Mr. Jose Cuervo. Seventeen shots later, I was finally cut off and sent home.

Fortunately neither of us had driven to the bar. Unfortunately it was about a mile-and-a-half walk home.

Simon, the ever faithful friend, shepherded his quite drunk friend home with a combination of carrots and sticks. To this day I have no memory of how as my last conscious moment was falling down on the sidewalk, laughing until it hurt, then demanding my friend commit the the exact spot to memory so I could come back to it in the future and remember what fun we'd had.

And that was it. I've no recollection of getting up. None of the two carloads of college girls who stopped by to chat. None of the police officer who drove by a few times. None of standing on the bridge contemplating puking. And, most importantly, none of how I navigated the stairs back to his apartment.

No, my next conscious moment was waking up on his living room floor the next morning. Knees bleeding. Head pounding. Naked.

I looked around and found my clothes strewn around the room. Simon says he left me on the couch, fully clothed and passed out. How I came to be naked on the floor is a mystery for the ages.

Yesterday I was out shopping with a friend down in Woodburn. We stopped at one of the many fine local Mexican eateries for lunch. I ordered the #29 platter with chicken and a Corona, which, of course, comes with lime. The scent of the lime brought that night back to me instantly. To the point I had to put it down and just drink the beer.

And that's why I don't drink tequila.

Anonymous said...

Back in 1996, I had a month off between jobs, and I was staying with my brother in Seattle before I went to DC for the new job - I didn't want to drive him nuts, so I rented a car and headed east.

Not long after I entered Idaho, I turned off the highway looking for a gas station, and got very, very lost on a winding little road in a beautiful valley. As a type A personality, at first I was stressed, but eventually relaxed and thoroughly enjoyed the freedom of having nowhere I had to be and no idea where I was.

I spend way too much time on planes for work to ever start a vacation on one. Ever since that fateful wrong turn in Idaho, every real vacation I have taken started with getting in the car, heading a direction I haven't gone before, and a strong hope that I will get very, very lost.