Why am I sat in the driving seat? There’s four other seats and only me in a stationary car. And I sit in the one with a steering wheel in front of it.
The valley below the moor top is cloaked in low cloud. Or is it fog? Or mist? Well whatever it is, I can’t see the valley bottom. The car park is deserted. The road leading from the valley to the moor is deserted. The figure sat in the drivers seat is deserted. Or rather has deserted. I’m here and it’s very early. The birds are silent. Everything is silent. No clock in the car to tick. Nothing. I could put the radio on but actually I am quietly delighting in the silence. I never get silence especially if my phone is switched on. But it isn’t.
I think about starting the engine and driving away. Anywhere away. Anywhere that others aren’t. A beach with just me on it. Except some bloody dog walker would turn up and march through my silence. Is there anywhere in the world that you can get true silence? Is there anywhere that peace rules?
‘What you need is to keep busy and surround yourself with close friends and family’ was mentioned to me. Is that true? Is it a cure all? I’m not convinced it fits all. I’m so pleased that others know what’s best for me. It takes all the effort out of it. I should ask them what they know about me that I don’t. I want to be more and do less. Doing is fine if the being is working. If the being isn’t working then doing is twice as hard. Am I losing you?
What I need right now, right this minute is nothing. A huge slice of nothing with zilch poured over it. How can you think when there is so much to think about. Does it work like an overfull chest of drawers. In with a new pair of trousers and out with an old pair. In with a new thought and out with an old one.
What happens if I throw a useful thought or memory out in the process. I may need it at a later date and it’s gone. We don’t have human external hard drives. What I have at this moment is this car. On a moorland top. Sat above the clouds. That will have to do. Expect I will go back home and quietly welcome in a new day. Watch as chaos ensues. Clear up afterwards and accept my lot. This really is as good as it will ever get.
Sat here, in my cold, impersonal, unassuming car, is ever so slightly better than that. I know it won’t last. It won’t last long enough to make the everyday less mundane.
I hear the first bird. It’s a curlew. It’s plaintive cry seems appropriate. A skylark rises vertically from the heather close to the car park. A van drives up,out of the town and past the car park before plunging down into the fog on the moor road.
The engine fades in the mist. As does that perfect silence.