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Part Two Chapter 2

e packed my brother's furniture in back of the car and took off at dark, promising to be back in thirty hours--thirty hours for a thousand miles north  and south. But that's the way Dean wanted it. It was a tough trip, and none of us noticed it; the heater was not working and consequently the windshield developed fog and ice; Dean kept reach- ing out while driving seventy to wipe it with a rag and make a hole to see the road. "Ah, holy hole!" In the spacious Hudson we had plenty of room for all four of us to sit up front. A blanket covered our laps. The radio was not working. It was a brand-new car bought five days ago, and already it was broken. There was only one installment paid on it, too. Off we went, north  to Washington, on 301, a straight two-lane highway without much traffic. And Dean talked, no one else talked. He gestured furiously, he leaned as far as me sometimes to make a point, sometimes he had no hands on the  wheel  and yet the car went as straight as an arrow, not for once deviating from the white line in the middle of the road that unwound, kissing our left front tire.
It was a completely meaningless set of circumstances that made Dean come, and similarly I went off with him for no reason. In New York I  had been attending school and romancing around with a girl called Lucille,  a beautiful Italian honey-haired darling that I actually wanted to marry. All these years I was looking for the woman I wanted to marry. I couldn't meet a girl without saying to myself, What kind of wife would she make? I told Dean and Marylou about Lucille. Marylou wanted to know all about Lucille, she wanted to meet her. We zoomed through Richmond, Washington, Baltimore, and up to Philadelphia on a winding country road and talked. "I want to  marry a girl," I told............

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