brain blip


Lamia, John William Waterhouse

Had a brain blip this morning, was cruising along listening to the deep and silky voice of NPR’s news anchor, traffic was moving smooth and fast, I was in my favorite lane (right next to the fast lane), slipped into autopilot, rolling along. It was 6:06 a.m., the sky still midnight blue, the freeway no more than lights and shadows.

Suddenly autopilot went off, the brain came back on like a slow-starting engine, and I didn’t know where I was. I didn’t recognize the street names on the freeway signs, I didn’t recognize the freeway, my surroundings appeared strange and unfamiliar, I didn’t see any of the buildings I was used to passing in the dark. I seemed to be on an isolated stretch, cars streaming pass me. Oh no, I thought. I’ve missed my pick-up.

Out of the gloom I spotted “ARTESIA”, my heart slid down a bit–good Lord I was on my way to…who knows where. I flipped on my signal, zoomed across lanes to the Artesia exit, hoping I’d find a 405 North ramp right away.

Soon as that thought hit, I felt like an idiot. Debra, you were on the 405 North, you dummy! (SIGH!) Now I’m on the great dark length of Artesia Boulevard, ahead was an intersection, no U-turn. Ignored that, swooped about, back down the road, another fast U-turn, onto the 405 North ramp and back into the stream of northbound traffic. Took me all of 3 minutes. But really. I wish the Twilight Zone would quit expanding its borders!

Finally got past that sticky point in A Lamentation of Swans, working on a new scene this week.