Here's An Excerpt:
The murky gray water of the Halifax River flows thoughtfully in our view while we sit on mixed match set of weather worn patio furniture. Ramez tells us about a sound studio he co-created. His large black afro moves slightly while petting his Rhodesian Ridgeback, Denver. He moves around a fair amount but all his endeavors revolve around making and appreciating music. He spent two years unplanned in Europe playing music. During our high school years I used to sneak out in the middle of the night and pick him up. We cruised the streets of Daytona Beach while trying to figure out who we were. We find ourselves at the same house I picked him up in many at time having only matured slightly. Ramez’s parents are around. They intermittently join us on the long rectangular wooden second floor deck. The weather moves around us unnoticed. His mom is trying to feed us, as always. His dad enjoys the camaraderie of us friends catching up. The Francis brothers present their latest disagreement for us to judge. They are both slim and tall and typically wear fashionable dark clothing. Joe took too long in grooming his precious self that day and in turn wasted the day for Chris. Their mom lives a half an hour away and they have to share a car when they are visiting her. The circumstances force cooperation but they are frequently in a state of opposition. Joe enjoys his style requirements especially shaping his medium length straight black hair. Chris is fast moving, does not like to sit still, and can be quickly exasperated. The continual game of wits through clever expression of insults always amuses and we take turns being the receiver. Joe and Chris are both in the midst of their medical residencies. They are bright and enjoy competing with one another from an early age.
None of us live in our hometown, Daytona Beach. Thanksgiving brings us all back. I feel light, unencumbered. I am in the present with my friends, but really I’m in the past. I’m celebrating our collective history that grows with each reunion. I naturally put aside most everything to be in this moment but something is dancing frantically in my head.
I have been searching for a suitable school bus to convert into a camper. Self sufficiency and creating have become pressing themes for me. It’s a route to independence, a commodity too easily traded for an economic or social benefit. My friend Matt called me a week ago. He told me about the Monroe County Sheriff’s blind auction that he had just been to in Key West. They were selling their bomb squad vehicle, a 1991 Ford ambulance. He said the shelving and the interior layout would be useful. I trust his opinion; he is an independent minded guy who can process things in an innovative fashion. So of course, I went out to the sheriff’s office that is situated between an oceanfront jail and a marina. A little down the road is the city dump, a grassy oceanfront hill that catches one's eye due to the flatness of the island. The viewing day had passed so when I inspected the ambulance it was locked and could only see the outside. A note on the windshield indicated it needed batteries. Not knowing if it ran or its overall condition and layout I bid $300. Auction winners would be announced after Thanksgiving.
While sitting on the deck, I tell my friends about the bid while regretting I hadn’t bid more. All three don’t react too much. They are accustomed to me doing things out of the norm, like when I decorated my 1981 Vanagon Westfalia, Moses. Moses was written on the front of it in colored glass mosaic and in the back it read "UNFINISHED MAN AND THE IMAGINATION" in the same motif. The doors were painted orange and green in geometric designs. I replaced the wheels with three star rims. Inside I installed a bookshelf that had a water fountain with small angelic boys pouring water out of ceramic jugs. I painted their faces orange and purple. I probably only ran the fountain a few times. The cabinet doors were covered in a yellow fabric where I attached various 70’s glassware to them, including cups. I installed an unknown imitation fur to the dashboard. I secured random thrift store found art all over. I modified the sink to accept a showerhead that allowed me to bathe outside.
I was eager to win the ambulance just to finally begin my project.
Risks and challenges
We do not foresee any major problems. We hope our imaginations and memories will work with us to be able to produce a memorable book. Once we complete the first draft, it needs to be edited. The challenge then will be to find a good editor who will add to the project. We have an excellent candidate for the job. Self publishing has become common enough so that we are not anticipating any large issues.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)