The problem was the dust. It got into everything, onto everything. The color of brown sugar, the consistency of baby powder, it settled and stuck to everything it touched, Which, like I said, was everything.
So many of my stories begin and end the same way. I sit at the bar, I drink, I pay, and I leave. But sometimes there's more to it than that. Hiding in the crevices, there might be much more than that. The first problem is noticing. The second problem is giving a shit.
But seriously, where did all that fucking dust come from? I think I'd have noticed getting so lost in Wyoming that I ended up on Mars.
My beer tasted like dust. My cigarettes tasted like dust. Luckily, I wasn't hungry, or I'd have ended up with a burger that tasted like dust.
This particular day, I wasn't in much of a hurry. I had a week to make it to New Orleans, and I figured it would only take a couple more days at most. So I decided to stop at noon, in this little dustbowl of a town in Wyoming. There was no particular reason that I picked that particular town. No charming name or majestic scenery caused me to veer off the highway where I did. Or, I think that maybe I just had to pee. I wish I had a better reason, but sometimes you've got to take what you've got and try to be happy.
I liked that little town, though. And that little bar. It was pretty much the opposite of every place I'd ever lived, and that had a definite appeal to me. I could even see myself living there for a while, if the opportunity presented itself, and if it wasn't for that damn dust.
"After I lived here about five years, I stopped noticing it," the bartender told me.
He had a little black nametag pinned to his brown flannel shirt. That nametag might have been the most expensive decoration in the entire place.
"Dusty," it said.