Monday, June 06, 2005

Novel: Murray's Adventures

There was a speckled mist on the highway as he turned the battered car westward and left behind everything that he had known and loved.

Three white geese honked as he drove by. The wind brought with it a smell of sea and adventure which he liked. At this time of the morning, before the workaday world spluttered screaming into consciousness, before the sun itself had begun to impose its heat on the dank landscape, one could sit and dream, or drive and think. Either way, it was a good time of life.

Inside the car, slouched in the driver's seat as per usual, with those long legs and feet encased in soft brown corduroy and tough boots stretching way our front, his strong hands inside rodeo gloves, battered and worn, gripping the padded wheel, his neck cocked at a jaunty angle, his chin set towards the rising sun, with an early-morning roll-your-own stuck between his puckered lips, Murray felt like he was in the control room of the universe.

Beside him, on the battered passenger seat, it's blue leather upholstery torn and scuffed by the posteriors of time, were a pile of maps, almanacs and snacks. A pair of brass-coloured shades with elegant tortoiseshell frames sat delicately on top of the heap, like a dragonfly resting on a garbage pail.

The back seat was similarly crammed and piled with a staggering array of equipment, bedding, underwear, reading matter and lilos. Unseen in the boot, the serious industrial part of the supply chain was bolted down and folded up. Thus, piled to the gunwales, the intrepid adventurer and his overloaded vehicle, stole quietly out of the old neighbourhood and headed for the smell of salt marshes and the light of a brand new day.


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