She was too drunk to tie them
herself, so I did it for her, pulling each shoe's purple sash around the ankle
and into a bow.
"What are you doing?"
"Laces. Hold still."
Earlier that day, before the bar and
the ad hoc houseparty, I'd decided to task the donkey with being my favorite
animal for the foreseeable future.
It wasn't a very impartial
appointment. Mules beat out donkeys when it comes to traits - that's the
point of them, I think, to combine the best of the donkey with the best of
the horse. Sure-footed, tenacious & brave.
Still, there's something about
donkeys and their bearing that I like tremendously. Whenever I've seen them,
they've always impressed me with how placid they were, nearly celestial in
their total calmness. Buddha-faced.
And this is one of the things I
remember talking about yesterday, to drinking companions whose precise
identities are amorphous at best in the thick of my morning-after hangover.
Hey, hey, hey, listen. So
there's, like, this town n'Arizona.
And it's called Oatman. And there are these donkeys there, only they call
them burros, because it's Arizona and people there speak Spanish -
not all of them, of course, but some of - and anyway! They're wild, these
donkeys - these burros - and they wander around this town, nobody owning them or anything. And they're the tame kind of wild,
where you can feed them fistfuls of grass right from your hand. And I'm going
to go there and see them next week, because they're near to where I'll be, and
feed them from my hand, like -
And I stuck out my hand, palm up.
It's funny, I remember most of last
night in a cursory, superficial way, but I woke up this morning to two memories whose details are so
dynamic that I can almost see them in realtime technicolour: tying the sashes
on a drunken friend's shoes and monologuing embarrassingly about donkeys to an
underwhelmed audience. Of all things, right?