The ten-mile span of highway between Isla Vista and Santa Barbara has become a lot more familiar in the last week. I feel like I could drive it with my eyes closed, or at least in that self-hypnotized zombie manner that my brain slips into during drives along all-too-familiar routes. The drive between Isla Vista and Santa Barbara is quick, simple, almost unnoticeable — and presently it’s quite slick, though I’d imagine that will stop when the rain finally lets up.
Just now, while driving back from a failed attempt at I.V. partying — which was followed by a failed attempt at poker and a failed attempt at watching “SNL” — I saw a string of road flares in the fast lane. No clue what hazard they might have been calling attention to. I couldn’t see much, just a string of little lights glowing this perfect, unnatural magenta that haloed on the wet asphalt. It was beautiful — so much that I actually turned my head a quarter-turn to the left to look out the driver’s side window.
I didn’t see a large pool of water that I could have avoided. I hit it, hydroplaned majorly and had to wrestle control back from my steering wheel into my proper lane. Hydroplaning is nowhere near as cool as its name makes it sound.
My wobbly driving only got my a nasty honk from some jackass in the other lane who I totally didn’t even come close to killing, but I think it’s odd how a stupid puddle could have got me creamed. It’s been raining and it will continue to rain. The water is everywhere: sitting insidiously on the road, squishing sponge-like in my shoes and falling over the gutters of my new place in cascading cellophane sheets.
Some small, sick part of me likes to think about the water just continuing to fall and never go away. It could wash away my stupid car and fill my house like an aquarium and soften the mud — not dirt but mud, because there isn’t a spot of dry dirt to be found in the country right now — and pull down all the trees and wash them away too. A clean sweep. For everything. Brought down with the rain and dragged away in dirty water.