Unless otherwise attributed, all content, text or image, on this site is © TaunaLen 2005-2011.
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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Signs

Do not pass, the sign instructed, like a hundred signs I’ve seen before, driving down a hundred different roads. But today, it struck me. Caught me off guard. Do not pass. Do not go beyond, do not push, do not make waves, Do. Not. Pass.

It made me long to stomp on the gas pedal and speed down the highway, swerving through traffic. I decided to put that thought in my hat, and think about it later.

Idling behind a pearl colored mini-van in five-o’clock traffic, I looked up and saw a neon orange sign. “Road Work Next 25 Miles.” Hmmm. A warning. How nice. To know that a rough road lays ahead---curves, twists, turns, falling rocks. So much of my life just happens, while I’m busy focusing on the radio dial, or watching the tail lights in front of me.

A dark highway is ahead, lit only by my dim headlights and the occasional oncoming eighteen-wheeler. The dial on the dashboard clock reads 11:11 p.m. My eyes are tired, dry, and wide. The darkness pressing in at the side windows makes me feel quite small, as I note a sign that reads, “Scenic Overlook Five Miles.” The irony strikes me. I’ve been driving this road my whole life, and sometimes I miss the sights, because the timing is wrong. The scenery may be breathtaking, but the darkness hides it from my eyes. Farther down the road, in six hours or so, the sun will rise. There will be another beautiful view for my wide-open eyes to see, and hopefully coffee. This darkness will pass.

A flashing yellow light in a sleepy, tiny town, and I pause, look both ways, and keep driving. A yellow diamond on a post says “Slow. Children at Play.” Suddenly I want to pull over to the side of the road and find a park, a playground, a swing. I want to run, dance, breathe, pause for a while and let my child out. Why not? This trip is not so much about the destination as the journey. Who said play is against the rules?

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