There is only one way to describe the weather this last Saturday – romantic. It rained on Friday night and remained wet and cloudy all of Saturday. Not the depressing types though. There was enough light and while the air was laden with moisture, it was buoyant and breezy. Well, water vapor is in any case lighter than ambient air! And so it was romantic in many ways. It was the perfect day to grab a lazy chair, brew some tea, and idle in the balcony while catching up on some favorite music and reading. Or just enjoying the company of a friend or companion or family. I did not do any of that.
At a little past 11 pm I decided to go for a drive. I am sure had I not ended up an engineer, I would have become a driver for one-off special errands. Yes, I love it so much. I am truly, madly, deeply in love with driving. I often fantasize about driving on long, winding, unfamiliar roads. But so do many people. What makes my love special is that I also relish the everyday drive to office or to the grocery store. I get excited about going anywhere. All I need is a vehicle, some music, and a tell tale sign of a road. I have enjoyed driving in the mad bazaars and potholed roads of India! And I know some of those experiences would ‘drive’ other people mad. Me, when I am driving, I am following my bliss.
Coming back to the Saturday. My initial idea was of a short drive. A little food would make it more fun, and so I stopped at Bojangles and grabbed some food and drink and then hit the highway. And then the bug took over. The weather cajoled me to go a little further. And then a little more. I crossed my friend, Margaret’s hometown, Henderson, and thought of her having fun somewhere in South East Asia. And soon I was in Bracey, Virginia where I refueled my car and my tummy and then drove back. For the most part my windows were rolled down even though there was a light drizzle. I thought the rain would come in, but it did not. The crisp air kept me awake and at one point I had to turn the heater on to avoid discomfort. But I also kept the windows rolled down! I wanted to enjoy the air come what may. I also had Bollywood music playing at high volume and often I would sing along. Some 144 miles and 3 hours later, I returned home a very happy man.
I should be doing this more often. I was reminded of my time in India when, during my undergrad and later while working, I would go off on these midnight drives. Sometimes to eat at a dhaba and at other times to have a cup of tea. But those were merely excuses for I know I was driving for driving’s sake.