I continue to struggle putting thoughts and events into words. It feels like I'm on a car ride. I get car sick so there is no multi-tasking on car rides. I remember sitting in the front with my Dad. You should know that I miss my father all of the time. I am totally a Daddy's girl. He was definitely my hero.
In any case, he was big on driving and on days that were a bit much for me, he would tell me in Spanish, "Let's go for a ride." He would let me listen to any music I wanted. There were days that I would hear a song and the tears would flow from my eyes and he would just let me sit there as the scenic views would pass by, just listening to my music and letting the tears flow.
In the high school where I work, we are celebrating Spirit Week. Yesterday was pajama day and today is jersey day. The only jersey that I have are from my sorority days. As I put on the shirt, I felt as if I was slipping on a memory. All of a sudden, I was in my early twenties and in college. The parties, the events, my sisters... we had so much fun!!! It hardly seems like I am the same person as then. Who was that girl? I took a picture with the jersey on and it seemed like I was still the same girl that I was back then. Has it really been almost 3 decades?
After Pace University, where I pledged, I took a year off to be a waitress. I learned that I didn't want to be a waitress. I went back to Pace University for a semester and then I took a semester off to figure out where to go. I transferred to Borough of Manhattan Community College for one semester then I transferred to Lehman College where I went for two years to finish up my Bachelor's in English.
When I went to Lehman, already I had changed so much from the party girl I once was (not too much). This school was about 3 or 4 miles away from where I lived so my dad would drive me. He knew I liked going through Pelham Parkway because I liked to look at the tree lined sidewalks. Riding with Daddy was my favorite part of the day as I listened to the 90s alt favorites and New Jack swing. Red lipstick and red flannel were the look of the day. My look was not complete without lace up boots and either leggings or loose jeans, so loose I needed a belt to keep them up. Driving with Daddy, I would listen to the likes of Alanis Morrisette, Nirvana, Gin Blossoms; even now I can hear the strums of Blind Melon's "No Rain." I am stuck in a moment and it's bliss.
I can confess this now. Everyone knows that I have a thing for Justin Timberlake. He released Justified in 2002. On this album is this song, "Let's Take a Ride." Man, it was like he knew me. There were days after 9/11 when I needed to take a ride. My father passed away in 1999 and it comforted me to hear a song like this one.
I have recently found that I still love being a passenger riding around on road trips. Arizona is a great place to look out of windows. I'm thankful to God always. I am thankful for the friends and experiences I have had along the way. With God driving, it's always a great ride. Praise the Lord!
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