The work day is like being on the set of Lara Croft Tomb Raider. The action is diverse, non-stop and reactionary. Survival and the yen to make a difference are uneasy allies in my body, mind and soul.
It’s 3 pm. I force air into my lungs as I head up the hill to where I left my car parked that morning. It’s still there. Bonus! It’s untouched. No dents. No tags. No coin scratches. The radio aerial is intact. Hey, the force field worked!
After I deposit my work bag in the trunk, I open the driver’s side door. I lift up the note and stuff it in the door pocket. I navigate my way out of the parking lot and head to the park for an hour in a safer neighborhood to de-stress and exercise for free. Unpaid professional screenwriters can’t pay hefty gym fees. Gym equipment placed into parks is a brilliant innovation by the Mayor.
I exercise. I close my eyes, look through my mind’s eye and drift into the flow of creativity. I picture me shaking hands with movie moguls after I cut a deal for “When Joe Met Slasher”, one of my highly-polished, buddy comedy scripts.
I look out an imaginary window and see Zac Efron. He looks anguished as pilots a jet ski. He hurtles towards a burning oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. I stop the rowing machine, take out my handy dandy notebook and write that down.
It’s 4 pm. I finish my exercises. I feel relaxed and sweaty. At the car, I drink a bottle of water down in one long swallow. I head to the gas station. I pay money and fill the tank. I see a young boy pull a tantrum because his father won’t buy him a chocolate bar. The father hugs him in tight to his chest until he calms. I take out my handy dandy notebook and pen and write that down. The driver in the car behind me honks his horn. I smile and wave.
I start the engine and head towards the supermarket. I gather sausages and broccoli. I get through the check-out with a minimum of delay.
It’s 5 pm. I pull into the driveway and park the car. I breathe a sigh of relief. I unload the car. The dog greets me like Garfield’s nemesis, Odie. She does the Highland Fling. I grab her paws and jig her around in sheer delight. I give her a dog treat and put the groceries away. I hear computer games and a bass guitar in the house somewhere. I open up the laundry door, hang out washing and get dry clothes in. I check the mail box; pay bills; go hunt for my sons and say, “Hi!” I get a few grunts.
It’s a good day!