I’m in a crowded room with about 50 others. Only a few moments ago, I was outside with about 50 others. It took us a while to hear the helicopters as they blared warnings to seek shelter. Get inside. Bolt the doors. Stay there. Lockdown.
This wasn’t part of the plan. This was supposed to be a gathering. A bunch of musicians getting together. Jamming. Making up songs. Sharing some beers. You know – a party. That’s what it was supposed to be. Supposed-to-be is a dangerous place.
I was supposed to be about a jillion different things. But I ended up being me. I didn’t know it would go the way it did, and I’m not complaining. Really, I’m not. It’s just that it’s easy to get wrapped up in supposed-to-be, resisting what-is. I’ve fallen prey to my own version of that game so many times, I’ve lost count. It’s uncomfortable. And I should apologize to myself. For I’m truly sorry for my behavior during those times.
But back to lockdown. A call was made to the local police, and it turns out there’s a burglary suspect in the immediate area. Maybe in this very building. Armed. Dangerous. Probably frightened and desperate. I don’t know how long we’ll be here. I’m told someone will call the police in about 45 minutes, if we don’t hear something sooner. I expect those 45 minutes will be long ones.
Many of the people here are musicians. They’ve put together a jam. To take our minds off the situation. It appears to be working for some folks. As I look around the room, there are more than a few other faces that look to be unaffected by the music. Like me, they seem to be thinking of the people waiting for them. At home.
I could text Mister, but I don’t want to worry him unnecessarily. At the same time, I’d like to hear nothing more than his voice right about now. He’s the soul who calms me. He’s the soul who strengthens me. Right now I’m feeling neither calm nor strong. But my desire to keep him calm is bigger than my need for comfort. Maybe.
Lockdown. It’s a word I’ve heard. A word I’ve used. But it isn’t anything I ever imagined going through myself. But there you go. That’s life for you. And since there’s no use fighting the situation, I think I might as well go with it. Someone’s singing a spicy Latin song. The rhythm is stirring. The vocals are saucy. I may even take a turn on the mic myself. If I do, I will not sing about lockdown.
Okay. Here’s what I’ve decided: I’m going to text Mister, telling him I’ve had a bit too much to drink. I’ll say I need to hang out at the party a while longer, so that I can sober up for the drive home. That should let him know why I’m not there yet and ease his mind. It doesn’t matter that I’ve not been drinking at all, or that I’m not allowed to leave. He doesn’t need to know all that. I’ll tell him the truth later. Once I’m home. If I get home.
The music is getting a bit more frantic now. It feels like our collective situation is creeping into the melodic distraction more than any of us prefer. At least, it feels that way to me. And I’ve decided I don’t want to take a turn on the mic after all. It wouldn’t be sincere. And I’d probably just start singing about wanting to get the hell out of this party-gone-wrong.
Lockdown. If I get out of here, this word will never again be flat, lifeless. For now I know just how curved and edgy it truly is. And I am reminded of how very much I love being alive. How I wish I were home right now. Home – with all its flaws and chores. I can’t imagine a more perfect place.
Note: This went down several weeks ago. Clearly, I survived – without incident – and all is well.