Yvonne (My Wife), looking at me over the rim of her wire framed glasses, said simply, "Define trucking." In an instant, a near half-life flashed through my mind. Past numbered highways, the miles traveled, and the places I've been. Scenes falling domino-like into an endless stream of motion. Blending together some sort of haphazard tapestry that, after nearly forty five years of grabbing gears and throwing freight, appeared hard to untangle. Scattered memories. Fragmented conversations. Bits and pieces of life, all meshing into some sort of blur that only occasionally spits back into the here and now. Images reappear Out of order. Random.
She is still sitting in her favourite position, waiting for an answer. And unknown to her, surrounded by all those spinning images. Some of my scrambled thoughts are unsettling while others fall quickly into place next to the longing that accompanies the faces hosted by the mileposts; faces that have gone silently missing. Everything in my mind revolves around a search for placement, progression, and history. A feeble attempt to "just answer the question."
Where does this memory fit? Now, when was it that I last passed that way? Chaos becomes concrete and history finds form amongst the fog of too many miles run without looking back. That this woman remains, believing that all this should fall into defined order, is what seems strange. "Define trucking?" She wouldn't ask if she were really paying attention. Trucking means endless change, too many goodbyes and too few hellos. The job, the life, and the miles do not bear any resemblance to dictionary definitions.
As she sits slumped in her favourite chair watching TV, a small smile spreads across her face. Waiting. Waiting for a simple definition that will encompass complexity.
Looking at her I say, "I can't. It’s not that easy."
American Dream This article covers a three month period in late 1997 relating to my endeavours to drive a Truck in the United States of America.
Albanian Aid A short story about carrying relief aid to Albania. The whole project was set up by the Policemen, Firemen and Ambulance men of Essex.
SFOR to Bosnia Herzegovina Supplying essential equipment and supplies to the British contingent in Bosnia Herzegovina.
KFOR to Pristina, Kosovo Supplying essential equipment and supplies to the British contingent in Pristina, Kosovo.
A Lifetime in Trucking A series of photographs depicting my life in the Trucking Industry from the late 50’s till the present.
American Dream Part Two This is a diary of events of the daily routine of being an OTR driver in the USA for a period of ten weeks in which I covered 35,000 miles during the summer of 2002.