My life has as much planning and order as a deranged deer's day calendar.
I record dates inaccurately, times incorrectly, and am spontaneous to the point of causing self-inflicted retardation to my cranial lobe. This, coupled with the fact that people forget to tell me imperative details, like the death of a great-aunt, or relocation to Yemen, causes my brain mammoth malfunctions.
The day I returned from India, I resolved to withdraw from the Navy. Instead, I'd be an au-pair in some magnificent location, like Ireland, Australia, or South Africa. I selected New Zealand three minutes later because they refer to themselves as kiwis: small, fecal-matter-brown, flightless birds.
Having completed MEPS and DEPped in, the military had a quasi-sumo-wrestler hold on me. I fabricated a story, flinging around the words "pregnant" and "cancerous" like a monkey launching manure. The Navy notified me that I'd have to physically present myself at the office for an official resignation. They scheduled a mandatory meeting for January 12th.
The night of January 11th I consumed enough moonshine to fell an overweight cow. My conference was at ten the next morning, and I was in Marin without a car.
At sunup my friend Fi-Town dropped me off at the bus station, and I embarked on the enterprise of returning to Santa Rosa. I exhibited my trademark twelve dollar black sandals from eight years ago, my brother's gang-red Montgomery High School basketball sweatshirt, and my paint pants. Paint sprinkled my jeans, as well as dirt, dog saliva, and urine. The last time I showered and washed my hair, Jesus was alive. My pores exuded alcohol. My mouth birthed stale booze. Decaying rat savored my tongue.
In a car, the ride from Marin to Santa Rosa is forty minutes. In public transit, the ride is three hours. I slipped into the comatose sleep of the sloshed. Hours later, the bus deposited me on the sidewalk two miles from the Navy office. As I stepped off the bus, rain cascaded from the sky.
I had arrived in San Francisco two days prior, after a week in Southern California. My black four-foot-long bag of excess was my only accessory. None of my friends or family members responded to my phone-harassment. I had to walk the two miles to the Navy office to formally resign. In the rain. In sandals, a gang-red sweatshirt, and paint pants. With a black body bag on my back.
My feet slid in my tractionless sandals as I shuffled down the slippery sidewalk. A homeless man asked me if I wanted a ride. He didn't have a car, but did own a shopping cart. I declined.
Eight blocks later, rain pelting me like an adulteress getting stoned, a police officer pulled over and beckoned me to his car window.
"Hi Officer, is there a problem?" I asked, as muddled as the time a cop pulled me over for jaywalking.
"Are you okay?"
"Ya, I'm fine."
"So you're not in trouble," he iterated.
"No Sir. I'm just walking to the military recruiting center."
"Oh, you joined the military?"
"Actually, yes, but I'm walking there today to quit."
His eyes roamed up and down, his nostrils mushroomed, and he inhaled my scent. "You might want to re-think that."
The policeman left.
When I arrived, twenty minutes late, discharging rain and methanol, the military informed me that as of the fourth I was dropped from the program and didn't need to come in at all.