Once fully liberated, she rides her antique, three-speed bike down the small hill from her campsite to the: RESTROOMS – SHOWERS – PAYING CAMPERS ONLY. She dismounts and goes into the well-kept, recreational facilities and takes a hot, 50-cent, seven-minute shower, arching her soapy back against the white tiles, rubbing her soapy front in the same spot, up and down and up, and then, rinsed, she stands, dripping wet in front of the first full-length mirror she's seen in weeks, gyrating her hips, mocking pin-up poses to herself and all god's good-looking men with a sense of the absurd, then she wraps her towel around, tying the knot between her *******. She stands outside in the sweet, Santa Vidian air, finger-drying her hair and imagining, unabashedly imagining, guys in the campsite above, eating fresh-cooked meat and ogling her. Then she takes off down the road, pale green nightgown fluttering against the rear spokes, past Bonnie's trailer where from sundown till 11pm you can hear the best country music: Randi Travis, Willie Nelson, Hank Williams Sr. She pulls up to her sweet “Bleu Belle,” shushes the dogs reflexively, hops off the bicycle, and turns, eyes closed, face upraised into a rare shaft of redwood forest sun.
Published in another form in Bagels With the Bards, No. 3