When I'm on the road, the regular world seems a distant memory, and when I'm off the road, the Carny world seems a distant memory.
The "Normal world", as I and many others call it, is a quieter more stable enviroment. Workers have rights and get paid decently, they get breaks, there are labour laws, attitudes are better, and people aren't treated like dogs. People work 40 hour weeks and have benefits, well....in most cases.
The Carny world is a harsh, dysfuncional, fucked up world in a lot of ways. It's dog eat dog, though the normal world can be like that too in some instances. A majority of the people that are workers on a Carnival lot are generally the highest form of incompetence society has to offer.
I'm not talking about the owners or the long time Carnies, I'm talking about the people who last a half or maybe two seasons. The people who piss anything and everything they have in life away, no matter where they are. There is an incredible turnover in staff on any Carnival lot.
Life on a traveling Carnival is fast paced and stressfull; living and working with the same people for 15 hours a day and months at a time really wears on a person. The negativity and attitudes can become unbearable at times, even my own.
When I was younger and the season ended, I'd be drunk or pilled up for a whole month trying to adjust to the quiet and slower pace of the normal world. People I knew, friends, family, thought I was fucked, and I was.
The end of the season is like being on a "Merry Go Round" that suddenly comes to a dead stop, it's hard to adjust. Now that I'm older and clean and sober, I deal with the adjustment in a different way. I'm a recluse for the first month, I decompress, I spend a month away from people, as much as I can anyway.
My attitude is incredibly harsh and I'm not fit to be around regular people for the first little while, so I stay away.
On the road I am constantly prepared for a fight, an argument, a crisis of some kind. I can be just as big a prick as I have to be, only the mean dogs last. If I interact with the normal world to soon, people look at me funny, like there's something wrong with me, because there is.......I'm fucked in the head from the road.
When the "Merry Go Round" stops, and all is still and quiet, there I am, standing on an empty lot, different colored leaves swirling around on the ground, the summer gone, replaced by autumn.
It's time to go home, wherever that may be.