It has been a good day, a long day, a very busy day. When I left work the sun was shining. I set off for home windows down, wind blowing my hair I considered taking a different route home. I thought of going over the hill, I love the views from up there, so much nicer than following the motorway as it snakes along the coast and past The City before heading slightly inland to pass the town where I live. I thought about it but not for long, not when I thought of the traffic jam that would greet me as I descended from the hill to pass the creek that comes almost to the centre of town. That traffic jam would be worse than the heavy traffic trying to get through the road works.
So instead of taking the scenic route I chose the usual motorway drive. Joining the A road speeding towards the motorway, swinging around the bend before the two roads merge. Suddenly I see it, slamming on the brakes so as not to hit it. All these red eyes glaring at me daring me not to stop. Then I heard it, the traffic news on the radio.
'heavy traffic through the road works. There is a broken down crane near junction ** and a broken down vehicle on the slip road at junction**. The tail backs reach as far as the A*'.
Normally I would just sit it out inching my way along among all the other vehicles. But not today, today I decide to take a detour, instead of moving along with the traffic I get in line for the first slip road the one that leads onto the Island. But instead of turning left I turn inland past the retail park through the residential area, onto the side of the hill. There is an avenue that winds its way up the steep side of the hill. Joining the queue waiting at the top I notice the surprising view in my mirror. On either side I see houses and trees but in my rear view mirror the view is a clear blue sea far below where I am now.
Reaching the summit at last I can travel at more than a crawl, passing the pub where I have met several of my dates including both swinger and Thomas. Another mile and the road forks at the roundabout, but on this occassion instead of the road with views over the harbour and city I take the road that branches out into the countryside. Descending I can see the white walls of a local MOD establishment nestling among the trees over to the right. This get me thinking about a post Marmitetoasty did showing photos of a local village that belongs entirely to one man. On a whim on this sunlit evening I turn right following the signs into the village. Here I recognise a number of the cottages she had taken pictures of. All diferent all with so much character unlike our urban dwellings. I wish I could have taken the time to stop and wander along taking some pictures of my own. It is easy to imagine the history that these buildings have.
Reluctantly I turn my little car aound and head back towards home. Before long I find myself once again in a queue of traffic. I notice the names of the houses and businesses along the way. Chestnut cattery, Mud Island Nurseries and Foxglove cottage. Gazing at these houses set back from the road it takes me back to my childhood growing up in a Kent village. Memories of apple scrumping, climping trees, playing among the hop vines, fishing, picking bluebells. Of school holidays where we went off in the morning on our bikes and came home hungry and tired in time for tea.
Finally I reach home an hour and ten minutes after leaving work. I notice that PB has arrived before me but I don't care because I enjoyed my drive. I am home, happy, relaxed and smiling. Everyone is excited, JA is packing ready for his activity weekend away. OJ nonly has one more exam then he is planning to go camping with college friends. DA is looking for another job, his employers announced today that there are going to be 900 redundancies. My mum has now got her new car, she has also been packing as she is off to France with her friends from the Rotary Club tomorrow morning.
I have decided that after much deliberating, I will not be going to meet Lotto for a drink at his hotel next Tuesday. He knows how I feel and won't put pressure on me but he knew my resolve was wavering. The more days that passed with no word from Romeo the more I wavered. But I know now that I won't be wavering anymore.