I imagine the man crunching gears into reverse, side-swiping the bramble hedge then raising a wave of gravel as he hurtles back into someone’s drive to let another car pass, had a bad start to his day.
A row with his wife, the kids playing up, the shock of an unpaid bill, perhaps his mother is ill, or just a string of small exasperations over days or weeks that unravel now on this narrow lane.
I understand how our lives can sometimes buckle with the unexpected, the road we thought we knew suddenly fraught with obstacles we are not equipped for.
‘Take a moment’ I wrote on the cover of a journal at the beginning of the year. Some days it’s as if I have never even heard those words. Others, I remember to breathe.
As I hope this man may be doing now, before slipping quietly into first gear, the woman in the passenger seat glancing sideways at him with a glimmer of light in her eyes as they slowly move forward.
on the other side
of the sign