Daisy. Daisy. Daisy. She said to the herself as she glanced in the rear-view mirror driving to work in silence. A trace of rain provided the soundtrack. She wore preposterous blue scrubs decorated with snowflakes and a creepy snowman, a white elephant gift, but at least they were clean. Everything else in her Charleston studio apartment was dirty and disheveled. She didn’t care. She barely spent any time there and mostly lived out of her Volvo wagon and the hospital locker room. She hadn’t met a single occupant of her complex in three years.
What had happened? Daisy was still a damn good nurse at 32, but passion for the job drained away several years ago, and she never knew why or when it had begun. She couldn’t recall taking the gig in Coos Bay. She’d also forgotten why she even became a nurse. She barely remembered the time testing positive for heroin and nearly lost her nursing license. The work paid well enough, but Daisy always blew her savings on trips to exotic sunny locales with colleagues she never hung out with in Coos Bay. Upon her return, the tonic from these vacations typically evaporated in a few days, and then she was busy planning another adventure to resorts where enslaved monkeys and parrots entertained the guests.
The assignations with dull and dipshit doctors comprised Daisy’s personal life, except for infrequently fishing alone for salmon or renting a quad and racing buzzed through the dunes. Her parents were dead and her only sibling, a younger brother, was in the Army and stationed in Japan. She hadn’t seen him in years.
Daisy had a serious boyfriend, once, a few years ago, when she was a nurse in Tillamook. She met him when he showed up with a broken leg from an ATV accident and asked him out. He’d blown it with a reclusive nature, but recognized his error, apologized, and vowed to change. He was desperate to try. He loved her in a taciturn way she didn’t understand. Daisy never gave him a second chance and never told him she’d aborted their child a month after they broke up.