Saturday, September 11, 2010

Off Toward the Sunset

Church at Hendon, Saskatchewan

The first thing I did when I turned 16 was take my driver's test. I could not wait to be behind the wheel and out of the farmyard.
Most of my friends were exactly that way. My son Everett is the opposite. He could not care less about having the freedom to drive off whenever he chooses. He's happy to stay home, apparently. Where does he get this from? I understand it at my age -- I've turned into a homebody -- but when I was 17 every place looked better than home, for some reason. And there really was no reason, as I was raised in a happy home (except for all the unhappiness I myself caused by being such a snooty kid)(thank goodness I don't have one of those; my karma really is better than I deserve).
So now I insist that Everett and I go for a drive every day, in spite of his apathetic objections. He needs to build his confidence; his stopping, starting and turning are still jerky as hell. We don't always have a destination in mind, and sometimes just head off to wherever we end up. One evening we came off a gravel road and onto the highway near the tiny village or hamlet of Hendon.
He sat in the vehicle while I toured the miniature graveyard. As a child I found cemeteries scary places and wondered how anyone could live next to one; now they are not only comforting to me, but fascinating, and I'd jump at the opportunity to have one for a close neighbour; the words written on tombstones are tragic sometimes, and sad, but also a testament to love and memory.