Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Open Road and the Open Sea — Junkyard Art

It's warm again, and the evening sun is bathing Truth or Consequences in a peaceful glow. I picked up my bus from Tunie, the mechanic, on Tuesday. It seems to be running fine. Now it, too, is sitting bathed in evening sun with a faraway look in its headlights that seems to say—Hey, I'm all well again. Can we go someplace? I nod in agreement.

Meanwhile I'm waiting to hear from SwankieWheels, who may be passing through TorC on her way to Arizona in the next day or so. Or maybe not. It is after all the migratory season.

Since mankind began farming and we tied ourselves to the soil, we've given up for the most part our migratory ways. But there was a time—and it's rooted deep in our souls—and maybe that's why it feels so right especially at this time of year to take our few possession and set off to go somewhere. The stars are out, the moon is high. Let's go 100, no make that 200 miles. Tires hum, wind blows. And for a tire-humming, wind-blowing moment we  are immortal. Maybe we are. The road rolls out behind us like a past life and stretches forward toward a new existence.

Tunie's art. Click to enlarge.
The  old cars in front of Tunie's shop to me are works of art. They tell stories.They lie in a peaceful state of decomposition having have escaped the crusher—the auto world equivalent of cremation. It is better to let things go their natural way including our automobiles and our flesh. There is something unnatural about the high temperatures at which we sear our bodies to ash and the high pressures we use to crush our cars to tiny blocks of metal.

The is a kinship between ourselves and our vehicles unlike any we have with other objects. We remember them all, just as we remember our loves. And like a lover our cars take us to places that we can never go to alone.

So now I'm talking to my bus. Putting things away in her. She says we've been in town too long. We're a little like sailors, those of us who travel and live on the road. A port of call looks inviting, and we tell ourselves we will stay for a while. But after a while it gets strangely confining and even lonely. There is a camaraderie on the road not found elsewhere. And there is closeness and connection in the parks and mountains, seashores and starry skies.

Home is the open road, the open sea.


  1. Yes I agree brother John ! I get that "urge to merge" back on the open road myself after awhile.
    Keep up the great blogging brother John.

    Thank you !

  2. Interesting innit... good to hear you put what I'm feeling into words.

    I've had a restless spirit all my life. Me and Homer (my van) are about ready to leave. I hang on because I love seeing my son and his daughter so much.

    I'd say our wandering spirits make us ... us. Never have figured out why I was born this way.

    BUT the beauty of old age has convinced me plus the internet! that I'm whatever it is I am ... I'm not alone and I don't need to apologize.

    Here's to "parks and mountains, seashores and starry skies." yeah

  3. Happy to read that you finally got your bus back! I've been wondering, and perhaps you don't know, but is "Tunie" a nickname? Did he get that for tuning up engines? Or is it just his name, and that it happens to fit his profession merely a happy coincidence?

  4. Yes! When the road calls, you gotta listen and follow. I'm looking forward to being mobile again next week. See you along the journey, my friend!

  5. John, I love that talk to your bus. You have hit the nail on it's reknown head!