I remember being in the backseat of my parents’ station wagon–windows down…my mom’s doo-rag waving in the wind… the filter of a Marlboro smoldering in the ashtray– on a trip that never seemed to end. I remember mustering the courage to pose those four little words in the form of an impatient question.
…Then jumped into the way-back out of the reach of a back hand.
It is later in life. There are seat belt laws. Cars are no longer manufactured with ashtrays. Yet, I, too, would birth children with the same innate audacity.
How could they? This car is air conditioned. We just got done getting gas…they went to the bathroom…they have snacks. Can’t they see out their windows? Can’t they appreciate the beauty all around them and not care if we ever get to where we are going?
[Do they know I’m driving aimlessly?]
I have lived a lot of places over the years. I have literally planned for nothing and allowed life to just happen–watched, like a bystander, as my world blew up and the pieces landed… farther and farther away.
It is a very human trait to try to make sense of it all–to attempt to find some common ground. I have to believe that we all have–at times–prayed to a gas-gauge-god; forgotten how to read a map; gotten tired; cashed a reality check written in crayon. I know in my heart that being confronted with our fear of being left stranded is actually universally unappealing. This knowing is rather comforting.
The year Twenty-Twenty has been a metaphor and an oxymoron wrapped up in hyperbole. Sometimes there is no clarity–not even in retrospect. However, we must still try to acknowledge our fears, plan for the future, and save a space–just in case–pieces of our lives show up at our doorstep.
What does this have to do with bāsalt? Well, I don’t know. I guess I just wanted you to know that we’re getting close.
Look out the window. Eat your snacks. Play a game. Be nice to each other. Take a nap. You aren’t alone. Twenty-Twenty-one isn’t that far away. I’ll let you know when we get there.