The Endless Road

19 Nov

After Boston and Canada they began their slow crawl on America’s freeways. When Meg climbed onto the tour bus each day she felt a wave of despondency hit her with the smell of boiled feet. As they hurtled through Europe, she had been filled with adrenaline, even making a list of the places she’d like to see again, like that was a possibility. She’d ticked off world-famous sites and compared the styles of people, architecture and even farming, sending postcards home to chart her travels as she went. South through France, where she had taken photos of the sunflower fields, to Spain, with old men on corners, widow women in lethal black and young men clicking their tongues as she walked by. Across to Italy, with its olive groves and villas; further south to lemons and coastlines that hair-pinned and plunged. Then northwards, through Austria and Germany and everywhere the towns and cities built around water: rivers, lakes and seas. Now across the ocean, the skyscraper canyons of New York gave way to long, straight roads, low-rise and Taco Bells. It struck her that, except in the very centre of cities, people were few and far between; locked inside buildings or cars — walking didn’t appear to be a concept they were familiar with. So each stretch of road became identical to the last with hardly a bend to break the monotony.

The rising summer heat and close quarters were beginning to make the atmosphere inside the bus tedious too. There was no singing and larking about any more, now it was all snapping and fighting. One fart too noxious could start a riot.

 

 

Extract from All the Places I’ve Ever Been  Post inspired by the photograph on Creative Writing Inks prompt for October 22nd

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