Monday, January 21, 2008

Day Two

Malcolm doesn't smoke. He is overjoyed that Travis and Phil quit smoking about a month ago. As a result, I have gone from bumming cigarettes to bumming pieces of Nicorette, which feels pretty good. Malcolm eats raw food only. I wonder if his influence will have us eating raw steak and avocado and drinking raw milk with egg before the tour is over.

Malcolm is driving when we pass South Of the Border in South Carolina. An hour later he reports that the engine is overheating. There is a freak out as we pull off at the next exit. (Travis: "I knew something was gonna happen on this trip.") We had all been smelling the sick burned maple syrup smell for miles and had been collectively ignoring it hoping it would go away. There is a pin hole crack in our radiator hose.

What seems like a disaster ends up being a beautiful stop. We have happened upon the the I-95 Tire Repair Shop which is located in an abandoned Truck Stop that sits exactly on the Mid-Continental marker. Lou is the owner of the repair shop. He is originally from the Bronx. He also runs The "Big Tyme Riders" Motorcycle Club. His repair shop is attached to "Club Big Tyme Sports Bar" which is housed in the carcass of an old Texaco Food Mart and has signs on the door that say "Private Party".

Malcolm sits in the van and watches "Office Space" while Travis and I walk the expanse of the parking lot talking on our cell phones. Phil deals with Lou's mechanic who fixes the hose in no time and charges us a very reasonable price for his labor. After Phil pays him, the old man looks at Travis and I pacing with our cell phones and laughs.

"Look at these motherfuckers walkin a hole in the ground out there while I'm fixin the fuckin van. Motherfuckers coulda walked to Florida – what you got me fixin the mutherfuckin van for?"

Hose fixed, we pull out and drive to the other side of I-95 to the Wilco Auto Center to gas up. I search with no luck for a piece of fruit in the food mart. "Remeniscing" by Little River Band comes on the in-house stereo and I, Phil, and Malcolm break into a series of very focused and strategic B-Boy dance moves. Song over, we exit the Wilco Mart, buying nothing, hearing the laughter of the cashier ladies in our wake.

The sun has just set when we are back on the highway, making the rest of the trip to Fort Lauderdale. Travis and I sing to Coldplay as we ride South into the future. Tour is on.

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