Holiday Craft Fair (Part 2) A Christmas Tale

The car asked Shana where she wanted to go. Shana didn’t know. She called up a map and started scrolling north, north, farther north, up Highway 101. She crossed the state line into Oregon. She’d never been to Oregon. What went on there? Logging and pot?

She saw a town named Gold Beach. Shana liked the sound of that. Gold Beach sounded nice. A nice place to die, right on the ocean, which she hadn’t seen in seven years. She’d even leave a big tip for the mortuary transport assistant who would transport her body to wherever they took bodies to in Gold Beach. Or maybe she would just drink vodka, swallow some pills, and walk into the ocean. No cleanup for anyone.

Before heading to Gold Beach, Shana stopped by her condo to pick up some clothes and toiletries. She also collected her pills (anti-anxiety, anti-depressant, anti-psychotic, pain), two bottles of flavored vodka (persimmon and dandelion), and her multiple vaping devices pre-loaded with her go-to cannabis delights.

The car found Highway 101 and headed north. She vaped every now and then while watching the Hallmark holiday marathon expertly matched with Christmas-themed suicide playlist songs. Nothing like Kenny G or Jim Nabors to wither the soul.

They crossed the Oregon border and met a ripping rain. Shana told the car to kill the movie, music and interior lights. She told the car to power down the window closest to her. A second later, she heard the old, non-neurotic sound of the ocean and rain typewriting the landscape. She stuck her head out the window and rain slapped her face like those old movies where someone tries to sober someone up.

Shana took the beating for a full minute and then stuck her head farther out the window and washed her hair.

North. North. North. Rain never relented. Shana kept the window down.

Her best friend, the car, drove her into Gold Beach. Dusk was settling in. Shana saw a red-lettered, stenciled sign on a piece of white plywood: Holiday Craft Fair.

She’d never been to a craft fair and why not attend and ratchet up the suicidal tendencies? She’d slug a couple of shots of vodka and put her slurry Dean Martin on, wander the aisles, see a hand carved nativity scene with a Caucasian baby Jesus sporting a Make America Great Again ball cap, and the proverbial trigger would be pulled.

Shana told the car to park. The fair was being held in the event center at the county fairgrounds. She’d never been to a county fairgrounds. She imagined goats and pigs and demonstrations of butter churning.

She slugged the vodka, got out of the car, and walked toward the entrance. Rain nearly knocked her over. Her hair was soaked and she needed a hat. They had hats in craft fairs, right?