We are all just visitors and in one hundred years or so we won’t matter. Only the stories we leave behind with serve purpose as a narration of a world that future generations can’t imagine the way we roll our eyes at our parent’s “uphill both ways in the snow” walks to school.
In the year 2004, there was a place called Texas-just in case those reading this in 2023 have never heard of such a place or it has become a property of the New World Order by now and spelled with four Z’s. There was a slogan in the time when we lived not to mess with Texas as the locals were a rough and tumble sort that took little crap from outsiders.
We planned to spend several days in Dallas, my traveling carnival of strangely dressed punk and rocker kids taking in a few concerts- that is what we called live music then, as if so in the case that live music had now gone the way of the dinosaurs and performers now appear in holograms inside your head. There was little planning and too much detail to get into in just one article so know that our flock decended upon unsuspecting Texas by way of planes, trains, Greyhound buses, and cars, arriving at small motel just near the town that one local tour guide had informed us was where the show King of the Hill was based on.
I should have expected that the backwards redneck town would have seen our loud bunch gathering in two hotel rooms, with about ten people covered in tattoos and unnatural hair colors and made a run for it but bless that southern hospitality- they tried to put up with us in the Super 8 for at least the first two nights. Our rooms were on the top floor, only accessible from the outside with a long balcony that ran in front of them. Where some of our flock divided into the opposite room took their time to get more tattoos, go shopping, and have lunch, the room I was in was the older and in our minds wiser of the bunch and spent our time talking to boys, getting drunk, and talking about getting tattoos. After a show one night, several people from both rooms collected on the balcony smoking when one friend stared down at the pool below locked behind a heavy gate and secured with a solid padlock- something we had found out the night before from pulling on the gate.
“I’m going to break into the pool,” is what I think my friend had said at two AM although we were almost sober at this point. Enough so that in text message I had managed to invite the band and road crew back to our hotel room to do something crazy.
I didn’t think to ask how my friend was going to achieve her goal, but the quest to do so got the attention of one of the guys in our group and he followed her down the stairs and into the courtyard. The rest of us stood anxiously awaiting what would either end in complete success or someone in the hospital. With almost no communication, the twosome had managed to drag all the picnic tables and various other lawn chairs and items to the area next to the gate and created some sort of human ramp that my friend was to take a running leap from and land in the pool. She was graceful, an airbound mess of black hair and concert t-shirt, falling into the water with no effort and starting the backstroke while still smoking. The boy that helped was so excited he jumped into the pool after her.
The rest of our group darted down stairs anxious to get our pool on too.
Somehow swimming turned into a water fight with the hose that I picked up and started to fire at people scrambling up the balcony, hitting doors and windows of other rooms and eventually the office though no employee ever showed. Instead a little old man with skin like a dollar bills worn and taped back together came out of the room he and his missus apparently lived in for sometime to lay his jeans on the sidewalk and cut them into Daisy Duke sized shorts while he, honest to God- leaned on a bicycle that had a gun rack on it.
Welcome to the south everyone.
The old man smiled a smile that made his face like like an abandoned building with most of the windows broken out. He asked us many questions while I was at the time wetting my hair and then tossing it in a music video type toss wearing only a jean skirt and a zebra print bikini top. I heard the old man say something about “sexy girls.”
The old woman on the other hand was having none of this and sent a call to the local police department.
There must not have been sirens because we never heard them. Picture part of our group still in the courtyard shoeless talking to an elderly man whom we hoped wasn’t sexually excited, a couple fighting on the stairs, a few random people still drunk and in one of the rooms, the rest of us chain smoking as we moon bathed on warm pavement. I don’t know who the cops found first but text messages flew, bodies ran, doors slammed,
My friend whom had been the one that had broken into the pool and I sat watching the cop come into view. It was pointless to run. We continued to smoke, I still dripping wet.
“Ya’ll the idiots that broke into the pool?” He asked.
It was hard to say we weren’t such idiots when I was wearing a bathing suit at now four AM.
My friend nodded.
“Ya’ll aint from around here though?”
I wanted to ask if that was a question.
He asked for our IDs and those of the few hiding in our room. He then moved to the next room.
“Too many of Ya’ll. Ya’ll aint from here.” The cop took a deep breath.
I could see in his eyes he was trying to size up if any of us would be fun to drag back to the station as a prize for the night to Cleetus and Officer Billy Bob.
“Ya’ll got too many of you,” He said again thinking. “I could make you leave. I say stay in your rooms for the night and then you get out of here in the morning. I don’t want this motel to call us back out here.”
Somehow we agreed to such.
For the rest of the night our rooms, whom promised to keep it down, kept the doors open between the two to speak first in soft whispers but then the uproar got louder and louder until we were screaming to each other. Trying to think quickly that the band was on the way, we came up with a story to send in text about how the cop had thrown us out and we were sleeping in the parking lot of a store up the road in two cars. Apparently they seemed to buy it and never replied.
If Texas still is around at the time of reading this story I hope it has changed. For all I know it is the culture capital of the world now and all this backwoods redneck stuff is suspected as urban legend. Let it be known though, Texas really does suck.