When you run the vehicle at 50 miles per hour, the world looks like a flat gray road, with two unending stripes painted down in the middle. But at 25 miles per hour, it’s more interesting and remarkable.
I love driving in the neighborhood where I can be within the speed limit and notice how the sky is waiting ahead to kiss this road, how a broken magnolia gives up fighting with the gravity and selects the ground for its final sleep.
I see boys playing volleyball in the green ground, a mother blending with the grass in the afternoon light, a woman taking her selfie with a dandelion seed. When we are slow, the world shows us how distinctively ephemeral every moment is.
There was no car behind me until this moment. Now a bright red Mustang really wants to go fast. “Hello! You cannot drive faster than 25, there are kids biking outside,” I find the driver on the mirror. He’s 40 something, a busy Asian Indian in America, aware of my gaze but ruthlessly clumsy, perhaps solving complex maths in his mind, designing software for some hard-hitting business, perhaps he has to reach some place urgently to fix something. “Can’t we be little cordial to each other and smile at least?”
After a fraction of moments, when the road gets wider, the Mustang overtakes, and roars a little. A girl on the sidewalk frowns at its blurry red image.
I drive cautiously, passing the homes with glass windows open to welcome lovely California breeze. Over the top of sequoia trees, in the distance, there is a thin slice of a transparent moon, hiding in its own home, almost non-existent in daylight.
I reach the traffic signal in two miles. A red light is still and clear but five hummingbirds over the wires are not. The Mustang meets my car here again. Eventually we all meet at some red signal on this journey of life. Don’t we? I smile this time.
When the light turns green, I turn to the usual right.
I chose ephemeral today. My most favorite words with E are ephemeral and empathy. What’s your favorite word with F? Do you love your neighborhood?