Friday, May 19, 2006

The Road Home

The Road Home. Following Nyssa from William and Mary.
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"Wisdom is to finish the moment, to find the journey's end in every step of the road, to live the greatest number of good hours." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
The road home, following Nyssa, remembering. Last year, the road home was long, twelve hours worth with walkie talkies, pit stops, books on CD, music, food stops, and very tired endings. This year, just an hour's drive, much better.

I have driven this road many times now, from here to Williamsburg. I have also taken this road to Sewanee, Tennessee and on to Mississippi. My favorite time to drive this road, or any for that matter, is very early in the morning; probably most would actually call it night time. At 1AM the tunnel under the bay is empty. Yes, a few workmen are at the entrance but there are no cars ahead of me and none behind. Just me. I drive down the middle. Why not? When I-64W leaves Newport News the road narrows to two lanes each direction and the pines thicken and crowd closer to the highway, their arching boughs meeting midway overhead. My headlights bounce off the branches and I get that quiet, other world feeling; it's cold or at least cool and I feel a peaceful solitude on the highway. I'm in a cozy cocoon between the trees and the road; not able to see too far ahead or behind; not able to distinguish shapes or colors or objects in the dense woods to either side. Yes, there is the occasional car; but at this time of early morning, before dawn, the semi-trucks are parked at rest stops and on the shoulders of the entrance and exit ramps; the drivers asleep in the cabs, the red and yellow lights glowing all in a row.

Later, I watch the sunrise in the mountains of western Virginia. The hint of light in the eastern sky, then the color; at first navy, then lighter violet and on to blue and pink and finally, the bright yellow of the sun appears above the peak of the mountain. It's a different sunrise altogether than that at the beach, slower, more subtle; and the world awakes. So does the road, as truckers resume their routes and more cars appear going here and there. With the dawn my fairytale world is gone, the road is just another highway and I am no longer peacefully alone.

Submission for PhotoFriday topic "the road". (end of post)

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