Its at this point our story takes a dark turn.
As I mentioned, I was unable to make this trip happen how it was intended with me and another individual. No one could or would come so I found myself alone. Well, almost alone.
Luckily, I had Bill Murray, my pepper plant and living companion since 2010. He was a volunteer pepper plant we dug up in our back yard and he was awesome. Couldn't be killed no matter how hard I tried! He was the best, and I referred to him as Bill. He was my buddy.
Well, as it happens, California is pretty strict on their border when it comes to foreign plants and produce. This hadn't even dawned on me as a possibility.
To explain where this is going, Not only have I had this plant since 2010, I've just made a trip across the country for just under two weeks with him. I've seen New Orleans, Austin Texas, Roswell NM, the Grand Canyon and places in between. I've walked the Grand Canyon and slept in freezing weather. I've done so much and seen so much, and my pepper plant, Bill Murray, was with me most of the time. I took him with me to eat a few times. He sat next to me while I slept almost every where. I looked insane carrying this pepper plant with stickers from places we had been all over his pot.
And, at the border of my final destination, a man grabbed Bill by the stem. Ripped him, roots and all, from his home, and tossed him like a piece of garbage into a bucket where they will no doubt incinerate him if they have not already done so.
Sadness is a strong feeling I had, but worse than that was shame. I was given the option to turn back with him and drive those 40 minutes back to civilization in Arizona to where I could have, and should have, mailed Bill back home. I could have taken him to someones store and let them have him. I could have left Bill in the hands of someone who may have taken care of him. For God's sake, I could have taken him up from the roots myself and murdered him.
Instead, I let some stranger kill him in front of me. I let him be murdered and I had every chance to save him. I feel ashamed, I am racked with regret, and my heart feels like it has been ripped from my chest.
I sold Bill out for personal gain. For my own selfish desire, I let an innocent die.
I Judas-ed Bill Murray, and now I have to live with that.
I drove the rest of the trip in silence. I may have cried. I may still cry.
I loved that stupid plant, and I killed him.