Bring Your Own Bottle

I always carry a bottle. I hang it off a belt loop from my pants. I don’t remember where I got the bottle or what was originally in it. It might have been a diet Pepsi.

I think it’s pretty useful. It has a screw-off cap. I’m always refilling it with different stuff. Water, fruit juice, postum, gin. Whatever interesting liquid I can get my hands on.

I get some looks. When a middle-aged woman walks down the street wearing a mysterious bottle from her belt loop as part of an otherwise stylish outfit, people notice.

I’m convinced that without it, I’d be virtually invisible. But that’s not why I have the bottle. At least that’s not the main reason although I’ll admit I do enjoy the attention. The main reason I carry the bottle is because its convenient and I’m nervous about—terrified actually—of the prospect of being dehydrated.

There are droughts, bad droughts, all over nowadays and they are getting worse. I lived in Arizona before I hit the road a year ago. The writing was on the wall and I got a thirst for traveling. I use my smart phone to track the weather and generally follow the rain.

I spend a fair amount of time in the Pacific Northwest, as you might expect, but I travel far and wide, taking short-term jobs waitressing or house sitting. Whatever I can find. I always fill up my bottle at every opportunity.

As you know, the droughts are worse than ever. Nobody makes fun of my bottle anymore. I keep a loaded gun in a holster next to it now. I don’t really know how to shoot but I’ll learn real fast if I have to. People are getting desperate and there’s no telling what they’ll do. It’s not my fault if I had foresight.

Damn, it’s a scary world. I need a drink.