In My Next Life

Today I saw my future.

I will ride this mini train that now sits in front of me, under our Christmas tree. I see no passenger cars on this Pennsylvania Railroad track. So maybe I shovel coal, or hide out as a stow away.  That’s it! In my next life, I will be the hobo who rides Jonathan’s model train.

The train creeps as it starts. Then it accelerates.

I hold on tight inside the freight car.

My five-year-old nephew L. peels rubber on the metal tracks.

I brace myself.

Then L.’s three-year-old sister, my niece H., grabs the train’s remote control from L.

“I wanna do it!”

H. swings the remote’s dial counterclockwise. The train stops and then races backward. Around and around and around.

I close my eyes and try not to hurl.

“No! I’m doing it!”

L. grabs the remote back from H., swings the dial back to clockwise.

The train lunges forward again. Faster than before.


“Give your sister a turn.”

The train charges backward once again. Faster. Faster.

I curl into a fetal position. I see whiplash, lots of whiplash, in my journey. 

This is life in an alternate universe. This is my prediction for the future.  I hope that I am a horrid fortune teller. Happy New Year!