The Road


I am driving in the desert. Just driving. The road runs straight as an arrow to infinity. Makes me feel safe. Feel less. The desolate nothingness is overwhelming and pleasingly numbing. Calms the storm. The hypnotic hum of the wheels mix in with the music. Drown out the voices. The car has become an extension of me. I feel in control.

Driving the car pauses just enough brain cells to halt the free fall. A fast moving car turns out to be a perfect place to forget about my problems. The desert is my sole companion. My only conversation for a month was provided by border patrol officers–pulled me over near Mexico. I pass small towns. There is a world happening somewhere but I cannot participate.

Tired. The sort of tired sleep cannot fix. Broken. Everything I know is wrong. Must drive. I stare at the edge. Pushed to the edge of insanity. Perhaps I already went over. So I guess I should climb back up. But life–and the world–never will look the same.

The road promises new experiences. Empty promises perhaps, but something to believe in; now all faith seems lost. A promise of a better tomorrow? An illusion? I must keep moving. When I stop the shadows catch up.

Maybe this road goes on forever? This road will never end. Still have a long way to go.

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NOTE! This short story is based on some personal experiences and is also an homage to great stories by Jack Kerouac, Douglas Coupland and Gus Van Sant’s My Own Private Idaho. I have borrowed–well stolen really, sorry–freely from these masters and their amazing stories.

15 Comments on “The Road”

  1. This series of photos reminded me of several trips across Washington State back and forth between Seattle, Washington and my birthtown of Spokane, Washington. When went passed through the Grand Coulee-Coulee Dam- lots of tumbleweed would roll across the highway. Awesome! Saludos! from 9000ft in Cumbaya, Quito, Ecuador. Lots of photo opportunities in Ecuador. Brian Jensen

    1. I can feel the burdens lifting off the shoulders just looking at these descriptive shots and feeling the truth in the words.

      I spent some time with my fiancee – now wife – in Ecuador last year; she’s from Guayaquil. Incredible ops for street and landscapes; but you gotta watch and protect your gear from those petty, and sometimes lethal, thieves! Ser seguros, amigo!

  2. Go to Broome! I’m on my way there too. Hang in there Flemming! This road will end somewhere… Brilliant impressions of the desert from the road.

  3. These images remind me of a number of faded Ektachrome slides I have from the 50s and 60s, or some faded Kodacolor prints from the same era, and from very similar places where I grew up and lived. Very nice.

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