Blue Ridge Parkway -- Leaving it all behind
Images of Maui, my grandparents' farm halfway up Haleakala mountain come to mind. But I'm not there. I'm in the fabled Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia, with Kelley at her annual family reunion.
As I lie there, I think of my laptop and its broadband card in the trunk of my shiny kurokitty of a car, further up on the hill.
Could I? Here, in an alternate paradise that reminds me so much of my mother's home?
To check, I pull out my cell phone.
I'm about five hours away from Atlanta, having crossed two entire states just to get here. This is where you would come if the nukes ever came.
This is where I would come in a world without online poker and games of chance. Staring up at the blue sky, I think about it. And in that instant I know I could do it. Just walk away from The Game forever. Leave it all behind.
"So long and thanks for all the fish" would be my last post, quoting the Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy. And you'd never hear from me again.
My world would be filled with the tangible, the stuff that made Kelley wince when she was trying to sell the reunion to me -- aunts and uncles getting into everbody's business. Other relatives complaining about the get together. I already had reservations for the weekend at Sam's Town, Tunica. But I came on this trip anyway.
In my bizarro-world of pokerless life, I would be much more fit, trolling up and down the hills of the empty two-lane roads of the parkway. I would be a better boyfriend and friend, having plenty of time on my hands to talk about politics or to sit in a wooden swing and watch a wispy-clouded sunset with someone dear.
It's time for the cookout. Hand in hand, I walk with Kelley up the grassy hill.
At its apex, I once again take in the panoramic view of the rolling wooded hills that makes the Blue Ridge so famous. This time something else tugs at my mind.
I pull out my cell phone and open it, one more time.
It's a cell signal, a weak two-bar sign of life from the Cell Phone Gods that make all portable online poker possible.
It's the weak heartbeat that Superman hears at Batman's funeral in The Dark Knight Returns when Bruce Wayne has faked his own death. It's the Poker Gods saying, sure, you can leave it all behind.
But c'mon dude. Not just yet.