So I went to buy some produce today and my card got denied. It’s been a long time since I experienced that feeling. I wrote a hot check and went to the bank to see what happened. I found that all the automatic payments I had stopped because we didn’t have any money went through due to an updated website that happened to update the day before all my bills were due.

Somehow, all our money is gone to places we can’t afford to pay. As Bob Dylan puts it,
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.

So I tell the girls that we gotta gather up all of the loose change in the house and I sit and wonder why all of the advice I ever got didn’t amount to anything. Things like, “Get your college degree so you can get a good job.” Or, “Buy a house so you pay yourself instead of the landlord.” What other well-meaning, ill-placed words did I listen to? “You’ll grow into your mortgage,” and “You can always sell for a profit or pull out the equity,” “Get some credit cards to boost your credit score,” and my favorite, “Consolidate your student loans for a smaller payment.”

I was born here and I’ll die here against my will
I know it looks like I’m movin’ but I’m standin’ still
My girls aren’t going to college unless it’s paid for — upfront. For weddings, they better elope.
There’s not even room enough to be anywhere
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.
I swear to myself, like Scarlett grasping the dirt of Tara and swearing she’ll never go hungry again, I swear that I’m never gonna gather up the loose change for food and gas again. I’m not gonna ever owe another person a thing but the debt of love.

Shadows are fallin’ and I’ve been here all day
It’s too hot to sleep and time is runnin’ away

I’m just too old for this. I’ve spent my youth having babies and raising them right and doing everything that everybody tells me I should. It hasn’t always worked. Advice must be seen as just that — advice. It’s not necessarily truth. And it’s definitely not destiny. Destiny can sometimes be the path that has the danger sign at its beginning but no one can really remember why.
Paul has always tried to tell me this stuff. I felt like I needed to help him be more responsible — to grow up. For what? To buy a big house that we work all day for and spend all weekend fixing up? Why? What purpose does it serve? It only serves the purpose of helping our mothers say to well-meaning friends that we’re doing well — living in a house and all.
Paul has always said, “Let’s live in a yurt on a beach.” I rolled my eyes and looked at him with that patronizing look that says, “Of course we can’t do that.” I just couldn’t trust  him because what he was saying was against what everyone else said. It looked to me that we were just trying to escape. It’s true. We were. We are. But escape usually means something bad out there is trying to get you.
I’ve been down on the bottom of the world full of lies
I ain’t lookin’ for nothin’ in anyone’s eyes
Sometimes my burden is more than I can bear
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.
Paul is wondering if my talking about taking off and traveling is just me being a windbag. I know he meant that as a challenge and he knows that I know that and that I’ll take it. I’m going with him this time. I don’t know why it’s taken me this long to trust him instead of everyone else.
I can’t even remember what it was I came here to get away from
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.
It’s a big chance to take. I can just see one of my daughters telling her therapist about how she lived in a moving vehicle and camped all over the states and how her parents tried to convince her that we chose to live that way — that we liked it!
But there’s the far more likely chance that if we don’t go she’ll grow up and succumb to all the cultural advice out there that doesn’t mean anything important and doesn’t really teach you how to live free. It’s just a panacea — a net of safety and ennui.
I know there’s a conspiracy out there. I can feel it. We’re supposed to watch and plug in and listen to people far more unhappy than us.
I can’t have our family buying in. It’s just not an option.
I gave away five bags of stuff today. We’ve got about 200 more to go. Be looking on Craig’s list for our stuff. Later, when we become famous, the stuff we sold in the name of freedom will be worth millions. And our house — we’ll try and short-sell it, but again, it will be an investment — a national landmark someday.  Name of our vehicle that we travel in?
The Nebuchadnezzer II. We’re taking the red pill.
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