The road hypnotizes me. After driving for a while, I find myself in a sort of a trance.
In his book, Rant, Chuck Palahniuk writes about characters who find that if they put themselves into these trances by driving for long distances and then crashing their cars they can become unstuck in time, Billy Pilgrim style. In this way, time travel becomes possible.
As the yellow line that bisects the road moves from broken to solid an back again, I wind through the trees and around the hills and resist the urge to test that theory. It must be the music. This album is too depressing. I need to walk on sunshine. If I told you that ‘Katrina and the Waves’ wasn’t a station on my Pandora account, I’d be a liar. Quickly, my mood improves. The canopy opens up and I drive through the sun for a while.
There is something about traveling that has a strange effect on time. It seems like days can pass as you drive a couple hundred miles. So rarely now do most of us get to enjoy so many hours of uninterrupted thought as we do on these road trips.
I must admit I am biased toward travel by car. It’s something ingrained in Americans, with our freeways you can literally drive on for days without changing direction. But travelling of all kinds tends to skew time. Sometimes to the point where our bodies feel sick and jet-lagged.
I guess time travel is possible. Wasn’t one of the things that made Einstein Einstein the fact that he proved you can’t really travel at all without time travelling?
We are creatures of habit. To break that habit is to shake our minds awake and start to see things around us again. It can be a strange feeling. Like going to sleep one day and waking up in the future. Or crashing your car into a telephone pole and waking up naked, in the past.
Where you goin’?