|The long road, travelled alone, is a metaphor for what…? Solitude on this ethereal plane? Inability to connect with other humans? A sociopathic disconnect between life and myself? 1402km gives time to reflect…|
I set off at 6:30am, full of adventure, excited to be doing this trip. I am going to see the boys of Boys High, class of ’92. I never made it to my 10 year reunion.
I take a slow ride, not wanting to rush things – I want to enjoy the journey, and stop and take photos, write a couple of pieces along the way. I am in no hurry – the reunion only kicks off in 36 hours. I can do this.
500km in, and I start to worry – I haven’t budgeted enough for the fuel. It’s not going well. Ruby is not a guzzler, and I have been using the cruise control to manage the fuel more and more efficiently – but it’s not going well.
At 701km, I stop – it’s patently clear I have way, way under-budgeted for this trip. It’s going to take more then three times what I have set aside for the trip. I call George, knowing that even if he does have the spare cash to get me there, and back, I can’t afford to add more to my monthly debt.
His phone is off.
I sit in the shade of the trees, at a rest stop. It is 14:00, and hot. I am sunburned. I wallow in my own thoughts for a moment, and distract myself, with an essay, about the trip back home, to see the boys. There are a number who I need to thank personally, for their support on my journey. James, Jacques and Brandt. Sheldon, too – but he lives in London, now. Or the UK, maybe not London. He wrote me a long email, as he has done before, quietly coaching, warning of the pitfalls, helping me to see the way forward. So I have said my thanks to him via email. One day, I will do it in person.
I call George again. We speak, accept that this trip cannot happen, if either of us is going to be responsible. I sigh.
I turn around. I am going home.
My heart is heavy, my mind heavier still, thoughts of missing the guys, missing the trip to my family afterwards – I sense the embarrassment kicking off an angry dissociation and depression.
I focus on the drive.
I love driving Ruby.
© Dave Luis 2012. All Rights Reserved.