This is part II of yesterday's adventure, so if you want narrative flow, or what little may be achieved by chronological order, please read yesterday's story first. And sorry, Poet Owen, it's Corydon, not whatever was written incorrectly yesterday!)
Finally, PP spies the Swifty Gas-up, and pulls into the station, but at this point, her mermaid soul is almost out the window. She’s breathing hard and trying not to cry as a toothless Redneck with a money belt slung round his dirty jeans hips stares at her while she tries to figure out which side of the car the gas tank is on. Indiana has gas station attendants? When was the last time you saw a gas station attendant out on deck wandering round, chewing a piece of hay, and saying ‘Thank yee Ma’am.'?
NO, PP is not making this up. She couldn’t. It’s all just too weird as he watches her pump the gas into the Cobalt (Was she supposed to let him do it?) But he gets a task at the end when she can’t see the receipt, “Here you go, M’am,” he points at it barely sticking out of the slot. Doesn't reach in and hand it to her. Just points at it.
Well, PP is sure it's a minimum wage job. What do you expect? And hell, bet the minimum wage in Indiana is pretty darn minimum!
But thank goodness she found the gas station. To run out of gas trying to find the YMCA in Indiana would be way too much of a story!
Relieved, she pulls back out of the station and is waiting at a stop sign to turn back onto the main road when an enormous wobbly truck nearly careens into her making a left hand turn. PP watches aghast as she sees that 100's of poor little chickens are piled in crates on this crazy truck. How horrid! Feathers filter out and PP cringes thinking that the damn chicken head driver is gonna hit her. Narrowly he misses the Cobalt and PP thinks how she's never gonna eat chicken ever again.
Shaking and weirded out, she turns and heads in the direction she thinks the Y is according to the map she can’t figure out. Again, she’s out in the hills, rolling green and expansive fields surround her. No goddamn Y in sight. Where is it? She’s almost in tears. Why can’t she find it? Is it her Mermaid Soul? Has it abandoned her when she’s so near her goal?
It had to be here somewhere, didn’t it?
Ready to give up and just go kill Aridis Fucking Moonlight for sending her on this wild goose chase, PP sees a burly pasty farmer dude driving his Big Red Tractor on his wide green lawn in front of his Midwestern Ranch Style home.
Okay, she thinks, I’ll ask the Tractor Man. If he doesn’t give me directions I can understand and follow, then I guess I’ll just have lose my Mermaid Soul in Fucking Indiana.
“Excuse me” she pulls into his gravel drive and rolls down the passenger window, her voice tired and wavering. He turns off the tractor motor, and leans over with a big toothy grin, “Afternoon Ma'am.”
“Afternoon....listen I’m wondering, do you know where the YMCA is?”
He shakes his head, laughing loudly. That’s a good one she can see on his face, “You’re a long way from it I’m afraid.”
”Yeah, I believe you. Do you know where it is?”
“Sure, it’ back through downtown, over the bridge past New Bridge Road and then when you see Foundation Road, make a right and it hits Jenkins and well you’ll see it!” He chuckles again, and PP nods, resigned. It doesn’t match what she thinks is on the map but what the hell....why not go for broke?
Was he right? Did PP find the YMCA of Historic Corydon?
Yup! And what a perfectly sweet little pool, with her own lane, and teenagers aqua jogging in the shallow end in blue and pink polka dot bikinis as the lifeguard chats on her cell phone inside a canoe dry on deck. It was worth it!
But she never would've made it without the Man on a Red Tractor, or her indomitable Mermaid Soul.