Friday, November 03, 2006

The Journey

We're setting off on a journey, The Girl and I.

We don't quite know where we're going. We know it will be somewhere good, though.

It's not long since we pulled out of the driveway. We've been in familiar territory so far, but we're still insisting on looking at the map. The Girl likes to follow maps, but she doesn't like how much I panic over attempting to read them. (I'm dyspraxic, which can lead to a range of interesting moments, from "I can't find the North Circular on this. I don't believe it exists," right through to "I'm going to throw the bloody map out of the bloody window if you don't tell me what bloody page we're bloody well on and stop quoting bloody road numbers that mean bloody nothing to me, OK?") And if I'm honest, I like the map, too. It can be a lot safer following someone else's route plan than just looking out of the window and enjoying the view, without any structure to what we're doing.

But there's no route plan for this journey. No one has driven exactly these roads, in exactly this order, before. We've never been anywhere close to the place we're headed for. The Girl has spent some time somewhere in the vicinity of where we're driving now, but she can't really remember the route she took - and anyway, she wouldn't want to drive the same way twice, especially since she didn't end up where she wanted to be. We want to go somewhere new, somewhere that's ours. And that's the problem with following the map too closely. Too many other voices, other expectations, are getting in the way of what we want to do, where we want to go.

As we begin to move beyond familiar streets and onto the motorway, there's an incredible sunrise across the horizon ahead of us. The Girl and I are sharing a bag of chocolates, listening to the morning news on the radio and beginning to notice the scenery.

And I want to throw the map out of the window, stop for coffee and start enjoying the ride.

So we're going do just that.

In actual news: I'm still sick, but I'm getting better. It's got very cold recently. The Girl's central heating really doesn't work properly, so I'm at home enjoying my own.

Oh, and The Girl and I move into our new flat in about three weeks time.

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