Floating, floating, floating so pleasantly through life, having forgotten the rawness, and the goddamn aching loneliness of the night sky. At some point I have become at home in my skin, or so it seems, though there remains in me a creeping suspicion that–with a clap of the hands, or a snap of the fingers–I’ll awaken back into that state of utter despair that used to be me. Once you have seen crazy, you can never really be comfortably sane.

The streets of Charlottesville are wet and dark tonight. The Food Lion parking lot was nearly empty. Soup earned a bone tonight by being so good and amiable, despite her ricketiness and general elderliness. I still haven’t constructed the bed I designed for her–a kind of taco-shaped thing that she can slip into and stay warm in even as she moves around and adjusts through the night. As it is, the blanket she sleeps under falls off during the night, and her snoring stops. That is my cue to get up and cover her. It is a maddening routine we follow every night.

The work piles up, a squeaky snowbank threatening to engulf me in one roaring crash. I am sure glad I have lots of skin on my teeth.