Anna – Sure, it was a strange time. I didn’t know when we would ever see each other again. I was a mess. We’d just gotten engaged and I hadn’t even really thought about that yet. My mother, she had to put up with me crying in the front seat as we drove away. Just a mess.
Damian – I wasn’t a mess but it felt strange. I went back inside, closed the front door, and then I just sort of looked around the place. I knew that you wouldn’t be back for a long time and, worse, an unknown amount of time, but I don’t think that my feelings had quite caught up to my thoughts. I felt disassociated from myself. Like I was watching myself do these really ordinary activities.
Anna – You were bamboozled.
Damian – Yes. Yes that’s it. What a great word. It sounds like what it is. The essence of it, I mean. But you feel things more immediately.
Anna – I do. I think about things later, and at first it’s just emotion and feeling. Not a lot of complexity. It’s not overwhelming so much as a sensation of being caught up in an enormous swell. I’m still me, I’m still thinking and conscious and engaged, but all around me I am dealing with crashing waves and they batter down my resistance to. To I don’t know what, but something, and it’s something I need to hold on to. And then later I really withdraw in order to think.
Damian – I’ve seen that.
Anna – It’s not intentional but I have to process.
Damian – Yes.
Anna – Damian! Out there, can you see that? It’s like an explosion. I don’t even know –
Damian – My god, what is that? What’s happening? There’s another. And another. Is this real?
Anna – Behind us, too, but I can’t see, there’s no window. There’s smoke everywhere.
Damian – There’s smoke everywhere.
Anna – I wonder if –
Part of the Railroad Perfection series