The Road

The beginning and the end are a given.

 No one needs to teach us how to cry. It is something we are born knowing. We learn to walk and to talk. We learn to travel the roads and the relationships that lay in wait for us. We learn to love and to hate, to strive and survive but we don’t need to learn how to cry. They say tears are a universal language. We all cry but not everyone sheds tears. Each child that is born carries within it the knowledge of its own destiny. We are finite and although there are many paths to take no one needs to be shown the way.

It’s just a generic pit stop on an old road. The road stretches out east and west from a corner marked by 2 stop signs and an amber light. The road isn’t as busy since they built the highway 40 years ago but it still sees a fair amount of traffic on weekends and summer days. The scenic route is always worth it if you’ve got the time.

The bright red and yellow sign shows the specials of the week, fried chicken, cheeseburger deluxe or the dreaded liver and onions. There’s an old battered metal sandwich board that lists the gas prices below. The current price is 99.9 cents a litre if you’re wondering. The middle nine is an upside down six. Most likely no one had thought to buy a third nine so many years ago. They had might have foreseen a 79.9 or an 89.9 but never a 99.9. I wonder what they’ll do when it hits 101.1. There’s an apartment above and flowerpots hang from the veranda that shelters the post office boxes below. With a small town “Twin Peaks” twist this particular place is noted for its homemade pies. It’s a little pricey for a slice; you could make your own pie for about the same cost and eat the whole thing yourself. You’d be missing out if you did.

The weather and the time of year control the flow of traffic. Motorcycle riders head up and down the road in large packs or small groups of two or three. They are for the most part carrying middle age heavy on their shoulders as they sit astride magnificent machines their younger years could only have dreamed of.  They are joined on their journeys by other lovers of the road, wanderers who are lost or those just looking. Early morning is the safest time for the locals. The parking lot is full of battered pick-up trucks as sun wizened faces fill the tables and talk about crops, no rain and John Deeres. This is tobacco country and right up until last year they could sit at a table and have a smoke with their coffee. Time and politics have changed that. They think that they are sitting still but they too are on the road. Outside the pumps are manned year after year by a steady stream of local teenagers looking for a little bit of extra cash so they can set off themselves.

All these travelers travel the same road. I travel this road and so do you. Although our stories may seem different they are the same story in varying degrees. There is the beginning and the end which is the given. There is no denying that. But between the sorrow and the finite there is the common road that stretches out in either direction and there in lies mercy.

16 thoughts on “The Road

  1. Im a bit concerned by the petrol prices over there, 99 bucks a gallon (I assume cos you dont use litres. Wish we didnt. Things were so much easier with pints, stones etc). Pisses all over our 96 pence a litre or about 4 pounds a gallon (8 bucks). Hey this reply is just full of conversion rates…. Craig x


  2. CraigA conversation about conversions…as long as it\’s not the religious kind, I don\’t mind. We do have litres here in Canada. I didn\’t even think about that when I wrote the post (oops, so I added that info). 99 dollars a gallon, don\’t even think it! You don\’t want to the tempt the Gods although I\’m sure the big oil companies would be thrilled;)


  3. Hey! I\’ve driven by this spot you\’re writing about ;^) Interesting how many people cry less and less as they get older – I guess our feelings become jaded/calloused with the experieinces of life … or perhaps we\’ve actually learned something such as to not repeat the things that used to make us cry.


  4. Thanks for the addition for us European schlubs. its about 99 dollars a gallon over here, and gonna get worse. Did you know 72% of our petrol price is tax? Anyway enough of the petrol talk, Im gonna buy a horse, no need to tax, insure or put fuel in one of those… In my fossil fuel rant I completely forgot to say what a marvelous piece of writing, sets the scene lovely. Although a gang of bikers would worry me slightly. Where is this place? Craig x


  5. ahhh i like you. i am going to print your comment and take it to my boss and maybe he will let me have some time off. either that, or my head will explode..glad i came back to read again. its a nice distraction, and i find myself disappearing into your words as if i am there, living, rather than reading. i especially love your next blog on here, about the seeds. I dont know whether you are referring to pumpkins or zucchini, i have both growing.. and i love watching how they change every day… thanks for reminding me about the simple beauty of life, i needed that push 🙂


  6. Ahh, Sister Golden Hair: liver and onions are a delicacy! Try them, Try them, and you will see, you like liver and onions, you see!


  7. I saw a gas station by my house that just said 03.9 …meaning the (1)03.9 was a given… Once again thanks for your words..keep writing!


  8. Thanks for stopping by my page and sharing my Sri Lanka pictures. Your pics are great. Keep writing and hope to hear from you again soon.Thanks – HOlly


  9. the road i travel down is full of crazy mf\’s. there is no turn-off, it just keeps going and going. i think i\’m tripping.


  10. Thanks guy! I have to agree with you California Uber Alles would be a perfect Wednesday song. Are they touring?, or here we go again. The punishment, I don\’t get. It was a victim-less crime. I think she just wanted to lock me up. Oh yeah, and dial-up sucks. HA!


  11. @ TheMusicInMyheadThe DKs are up and away. Check this link for punishment, I\’m sure that having Paige as your prison warden would be a sentence you could serve easily ;)@dichoto_me We all travel it whether we will it or not@aimsky27 Maybe it\’s time for the offramp? lol@CraigSorry…better luck next time?@ Holly My pleasure. I\’d love to go there some day myself@uncledavin Remind me to stay away from the gas stations in your neighbourhood.;)@LeeI\’d rather eat green eggs and ham Sam I am.@12HourDaze4EverAndEverIt\’s pumpkins actually, they do take over the garden don\’t they? I dropped by your site and was glad to see you so chipper =) @ junquedujour Haven\’t we all driven past this place? lol


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