Tuesday, 30 December 2008

31 December 2008

known it and that it was entering a new and horrible stage of jails and iron sorrows, such as Egyptian kings must know in the drowsy afternoon when the fight is up in the reeds of the mires. But the cruiser was our taxi and from that moment on we flew East and had to. At the Travel Bureau there was a tremendous offer for someone to drive a 47 Cadillac limousine to Chicago. The owner had been driving up from Mexico with his family and got tired and put them all on a train. All he wanted was identification and for the car to get there. I showed the man- -a squat Italian Chicago baron---my papers and assured him everything would come off right. I told Neal “And don’t fuck up with this car.” Neal was jumping up and down with excitement to see it. We had to wait an hour. We lay on the grass near the church where in 1947 I had passed some time with panhandling hoboes after seeing Ruth G. home and there I fell asleep from sheer horror and exhaustion with my face to the afternoon birds. But Neal hustled right around town. He drew up a talking acquaintance with a waitress in a luncheonette and as of yore, when he had her alone outside, persuaded her the sun and moon and she innocently accepted and must have been an impulsive girl. In any case Neal made a date to take her driving in his Cadillac that afternoon, and came back to wake me with the news. Now I felt better. I rose to the new complications. When the Cadillac arrived Neal instantly drove off with it “to get gas” and the Travel Bureau man looked at me and said “When’s he coming back. The passengers are all ready to go and waiting.” He showed me two Irish boys from an Eastern Jesuit school waiting with their suitcases on the benches. “He just went for gas. He’ll be right back.” I cut down to the corner and watched Neal as he waited for the waitress, who had been changing in her room on the corner of 17th and Grant, in fact I could see her from where I stood in front of her mirror primping and fixing her silk stockings and I wished I could go along with them. She came running out of the hotel and jumped in the Cadillac. I wandered back to reassure the TB boss and the passengers. From where I stood in the door I saw a faint flash of the Cadillac crossing Cleveland Place with Neal, T-shirted and joyous, fluttering

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