Saturday, May 16th, 2009 • No Comments on Go Crazy
Girl Crazy includes my very dirty (ahem) story, “Muddy Waters.” Here’s a taste:
I was completely out of my element and scared out of my mind. Against my better judgment, I had foolishly fallen in lust with an outdoorsy girl with taste for extreme sports and after three months of tame dates, she’d insisted I try something she liked. So, instead of sitting in a coffee shop, sipping double shot espressos while discussing Molière, which would have been my preference, I was bouncing around in a Jeep that had once been bright yellow and was now mud brown. It was mud brown because we were driving—bouncing, more like it—through mud. It wasn’t just the Jeep that was muddy—Becky looked like a spa treatment gone horribly wrong and I could only imagine that I looked just as bad.
While I clung to the Jeep for dear life fearing the flimsy seatbelt was inadequate to the task of keeping me contained in the vehicle, Becky bounced and whooped like she was on a thrill ride, her once-blond braids caked with mud. We were out in the country somewhere south of Baltimore, some place I’d never been and didn’t even know existed until Becky had brought me here along narrow back roads that gave way to gravel roads that ended in wide open fields dotted with wildflowers and scrub brush. After a three-day summer rain, the fields were little more than one big mud pool and Becky thought this was the greatest thing in the world. Which made me question her sanity—and mine, for going along with this.
“Isn’t this freakin’ awesome, Kate?” she yelled over the sound of the engine and the wind whipping through the open Jeep as she made donuts in a particularly deep mud bog. “Man, I’ve missed muddin’!”
I forced a smile and was rewarded with a splatter of mud across my teeth. “Oh yeah, it’s great,” I shrieked, hoping that was a bit of rock between my teeth and not a bug. “Don’t know why we didn’t do this sooner.”
Becky ran the Jeep up a slight incline and we went flying over it, into another mud bog at the edge of a stand of trees. My stomach lurched and I closed my eyes, which only seemed to make it worse.
“You okay?” she said, bringing the Jeep to a stop. “You look kind of green.”
With my eyes still closed, I nodded slightly. “Fine, fine. Just a little queasy.”
She patted my arm. “You’ll be okay. You just need to get out and stretch your legs. C’mon!”
I groaned as I struggled out of the Jeep. I hoped she wasn’t planning on taking me on a thirty-mile hike through the woods. Standing next to the Jeep, I bent over and took some deep breaths. All I could smell was the earthy aroma of mud. Not a pleasant smell.
Becky was messing around at the back of the Jeep and singing “Sweet Home Alabama” when I finally was able to get my stomach to agree not to discharge its contents. I watched as she removed a cooler from a webbed cargo net, along with a rolled blanket. My heart leapt—it didn’t look like we were going hiking at all! There was a goddess.
“Thirsty?” she asked, holding out a partially frozen liter-sized bottle of water. “I’ve got power bars, too.”
“Always prepared,” I muttered, taking the water. “I don’t suppose you’ve got a beer in there. Or a bottle of tequila?”
She laughed and gave me a one-armed hug as she chugged from another water bottle. “You’re so cute. Such a city girl.”
Despite the grungy state we were in, she kissed me. I tasted the cold of the water and the slight gritty texture of mud that was smeared on both our mouths. I pulled away and wiped at the back of my mouth with an even dirtier hand. “Yes. City girl. City girl needs shower before she makes out.”
I will readily admit that I share more than a few traits with the protagonist of this story. But I had a lot of fun writing it and my research involved looking at a lot of pictures of Jeeps in mud and reading forums about the sport of mudding.
I’m a dirty, dirty girl.