Saturday, 6 June 2009

Moving into 5th

Driving at night, lights from the road cast long & drawn out silhouettes across the upholstered roof of Dad's van. This is a beautiful moment. Behind the wheel, I feel the grit of the steering column with each subtle turn. I cruise along the bends with life under my palms.

It's not an ideal vehicle, but it's full of endless nostalgia. There is sand wedged into every inch of stitching in its seats. Each piece is a relic of summer holidays and other adventures.

I've got my window down. The cabin is full of fresh, crisp air. It ruffles my hair on entry. The radio struggles to deliver a station. It produces a sound which is stifled by the traffic gliding past. Despite what's playing, I sing a song (at least the words I know) that remind me of youth's experience; girlfriends, best friends, lighting fires and staying up all night at the bay. I smile, recalling moments of happiness and even some of pain.

I've taken my tie off at some traffic lights. It's now on the dusty floor. My sleeves are folded up and around my wrist, they flutter with the wind that pours in.

Headed down a long and gradual hill, I slide into 5th, crunching the old wreck's gear box. On this perfectly still night, I feel as though I've the only thing moving. And as I roll down the hill, it's more like I'm effortlessly flying than driving. The motion is exhilarating.

I've got to get up early in the morning, but I'm in no hurry. I'm enjoying this time too much. For a moment, it's like being on vacation, nothing matters here. I'm away and free.

It's only me. Left alone with my thoughts. Illuminated by the dashboard and passing headlights.

jf. x