Turn Left

As usual, we set out not long after rising for in my opinion there is no better time to be on the road than in the early hours of the morning. Everything looks brand new and we marvel at the world slowly come to life around us.

We climb and descend through mountains and valleys; windows rolled down to breathe in the thick, green air while the birdsong echoes along the winding road before us. The valleys, the very definition of bucolic: a pastoral poem, with dairy cows resplendent upon their rolling green pastures.

We stop at a favourite general store, I eye off the shelves heaving with local preserves and the plates of those staying for breakfast while he places our order of coffee, tea and something sweet to go. The status quo is generally eating on the run but this time we do my very favourite thing to do: we change our minds, we turn left instead.

A quiet spot is found along the roadside for us to disembark and break the fast together among the bees and the blossom. Trading a bit of his banana loaf for a corner of my sour cherry and walnut, watching a train in the distance snake through the countryside, sipping, talking, laughing, exploring. This is the way to travel.

One single left turn changes the pace of the entire trip and the endless highway is replaced with country roads shadowed by forests of tall trees only broken sporadically by farm or village. With no need to hurry, the odd bit of blossom foraging doesn't rock the boat, but rather is encouraged and I am in my element. We stop to lean on fence posts, gazing wistfully, longingly at dilapidated farmhouses marked with those most wonderful words, For Sale, and dream our little dreams.

Just before reaching the highway, the real road home, we stumble upon a roadside flower stall. Coins jangle into the honesty box while I take my time picking a posy of joyful daffodils, carefully placing them alongside the blossom and other gathered ephemera from our journey.

As we join the steady stream of traffic heading south, we look at each other and smile. What a wonderful morning we have had and the day is still young.