Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A hermit, a bonnet, and Stephen King

Can pregnancy accelerate your imagination? I'm beginning to think so. (I'm feeling much better by the way. No nausea! Yea!)

Karen is teaching in Seattle this week and I have tagged along. Karen travels about 1/3 of the year and I have been fortunate enough to travel with her many times. When I first started accompanying Karen on her business trips, I would keep our rental car and see the sights of whatever city we were visiting. But then one day it dawned on me that I was driving around looking for some famous views, not because I really wanted to, and not because I really enjoyed doing it alone, but because it was something I felt I was "supposed" to do.

It would be foolish to be in a new city and not see some landmarks, right? Well, I quickly got over it. Now when I travel with her, I usually stay within 20 miles of our hotel. I'm a hermit by nature and traveling doesn't really change this fact.

And I really enjoy being a hermit when I have a new, exciting book to read. I purchased Stephen King's newest book, "Lisey's Story" last week and started reading it on this trip. I love Stephen King. I've read almost all of his books. I'm not a horror buff but I love his style. I enjoy how King writes about the inner dialog that goes on in most people's heads (including my own). I think his insights on human nature are scary yet true. Nobody can pull me into a story or scare the beejesus out of me like King.

But it's easy to get pulled too deeply into his stories. I begin to suspect complete strangers of being bizarre (and maybe evil?) and start jumping at every sound.

Case in point... yesterday afternoon, I was lounging in our hotel room, reading King, when the housekeeper knocked on the door to see if she could clean our room. I agreed, thanked her, gathered my book and went to the lobby to read some more. Several housekeepers walked by and made their hellos.

One housekeeper scared the crap out of me. She sort of snuck up on me and when I looked up from my book, I must have jumped a foot. She had the typical housekeeping uniform on but she had a bonnet on her head. An honest-to-God BONNET. Like a Little-House-on-the-Prairie bonnet. And she didn't look Quaker or Amish or any other kind of person who wears a bonnet for a cultural/spiritual reason. She looked like she wore a bonnet because she was crazy as a loon!

"You shouldn't read Stephen King," she announced, hovering boldly over me and leering. "Oh yes?" I croaked, trying to keep my voice level and not squeak.

"Yes", she firmly stated. "You should read CS Lewis" she said.

"Oh sh*t!" I thought to myself. You look like a character right out of one of King's books! Some bible-thumping crazy lady who will attack me the moment she realizes I'm a child-bearing, King-reading lesbian. You are a bonnet-wearing, greasy-haired loon like Kathy Bates from King's "Misery" book.

"I've read CS Lewis", I said, trying to appease this crazy-ass*d Nelly. "He's good," I add.

"Then stop reading King", she commands once more and walks away, looking back at me with a horrid grin at my wide-eyed shock.

At this point, I got up (looking over my shoulder the whole time), went back into the hotel room and double-bolted the door.

For the rest of last night and today, I've been as jumpy as a rabbit. I keep expecting her to lunge out at me as I'm walking down the hotel hallway. "No more King!" she'll scream as she goes at my throat with her claws.

Sigh... I should know better than to read King on Halloween. My active imagination is scary!

[14w, 1d]


Mo said...

This was cute. That would totally freak me out. I love King and C.S. Lewis. Hope you do get to see some sights in Seattle, though. I'm from there, and you don't get beautiful weather like this very often.

wenders said...

This made me laugh, but I would have been wicked freaked out. I think I really do watch too much CSI...combine that with reading King and I would be TROUBLE! :)

revrose said...

So is the King book really that good? You could tell "bonnet head" that you belong to a Native American church that does rituals on people like her. Then she'll run from you! MOM

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