Monday (February 2019, Round 2, Day 2)
I saw the tracks as soon as I opened my door. That should have been enough for me to turn right around and decide that Monday was simply too full of Monday for me to leave the house. I had already pushed past more than any reasonable human should have to face in the small time between waking and work. To be greeted by strange animal tracks right outside my door before I’d even gotten my travel mug up to my lips? Woulda coulda shoulda – I saw the damn tracks, stepped over them, and continued to slog my way through Monday.
It’s almost funny now, looking back at it. If only the power and precision of hindsight could be harnessed we’d have a solution to our energy problems.
I got in my car, ignoring the fact that the tracks went right under me, and fumbled my way through getting myself ready to drive. I hate driving. I always have and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. Cars are a ton of trouble. Literally. Every time I get behind the wheel I feel like I’m rolling the dice on whether today will be the day I become a murderer. Or a maimer, I suppose, since that’s more likely. I go through a complicated preparation ritual before putting the car into gear and starting on my way. I did it that morning, same as always, and everything went just a bit wrong in the way they only seem to do on Mondays. The charger needed coaxing, the radio was on the wrong station, the mirror needed adjusting and didn’t want to land in the right spot. Nothing major, everything annoying.
I was so occupied with the annoyances I didn’t notice that I wasn’t alone. I’m not sure how I missed it when I adjusted the mirror, but it wasn’t until I reached my arm over the passenger seat to look out the back window that I saw the raccoon. It was sitting in my back seat, like a person, not properly on all fours as a raccoon should. That was the thought that went through my head. Not, “what the hell is a raccoon doing in my car?” or “how the hell did it get the seatbelt buckled?” My only concern in that moment was its posture.
I looked at it, it looked at me, and I decided I was hallucinating and continued on my commute. I backed out of the driveway and onto my street thanking past me for choosing the last house on a street with a cul-de-sac when I was choosing my home. I drove the three miles to work with my hands at ten and two. I listened to the soothing talk radio hosts delivering horrible news of the downfall of our civilization while keeping my eyes on the road and not on the raccoon that wasn’t really there. As my commutes go, that one was smoother than most, all things considered. I even joked to myself that I should hallucinate more often.