Jesse rides through the night under the Main Street light ridin’ slow. This is his escape. It is how he clears his mind. He needed to get away, to get out, to forget. To figure things out.
He rides through town where people are, where lights are flashing, where life is happening. It helps. Seeing people, other cars, lights, ball fields lit up after the games are over. The line of tail lights in his mirrors all heading to their nice, comfortable homes, where they too can try to pretend like everything is OK at home. He can’t do that anymore. Too many memories in that house.
So he rides through town, looking at the people laughing and drinking their margaritas out on the patio of the Mexican restaurant. He just rides on, expressionless, emotionless. He sees a couple guys out on the basketball courts in the park, playing one on one. Sweat drenching their shirts on this hot and humid night. He just rides on.
He rides across the bridge over the river that runs through town, sees a couple walking hand in hand on the sidewalk. The man waves to him, but he just stares forward. He rides past the police station, never had a problem with them, past the firehouse and the post office. He rides out on Elm Street past the houses of suburbia, SUV’s and pick-up trucks in almost every driveway. He rides on, looking for something, but not sure what.
He gets to the railroad tracks and stops, after this it is open country for miles and miles, no one would be out there, nothing but open land. He looks over to his right at the old gas station that still offers full service, sees the old man that owns the place sitting outside drinking a soda. The old man just nods and Jesse nods back. No need to have their conversation again, he understands, he might be the only one that does.
“Son, how come you just ride up to these tracks and just stops?” the old man had asked. “If I had that bike of yours, I’d be on the other side of the tracks just riding out in the open, nothin’ to bother you or get in your way. But you stop here every night, look across the tracks, then just turn around and go back the other way….why’s that?”
Jesse looks at the old man and just says, “Not sure I’d come back. . . . .”