So I’d like to talk for a moment about that feeling you get when a small, ordinary, daily happening occurs, and in that moment, the sound, sight, smell, touch of it transports you back to another moment, another time, another you… Magical isn’t it. One such sound, for me, is the sound of a truck’s horn. As said before, a lot of my memories are faded now. I don’t have a good memory by the usual definition of the phrase. My memories are hazy, misty. But I remember how I felt, so clearly.
When I was younger, less jaded, and happy, from what I remember, my parents, my sister and I would drive down to Johannesburg for a yearly sort of break from our daily lives. A holiday, if you will. You know, to see family, shop and basically pass away the school holidays enjoyably. On route southwards, we’d stay overnight at Bubi Village, situated in the low veld of Zimbabwe, before we crossed the border into South Africa. I remember lying in bed, warm, cosy, excited and full of anticipation of the journey ahead, my little sister sleeping soundly next to me, the hushed voices of my parents in the next bed. The bright light of a cigarette cherry floating in the darkness…. And I would listen to the trucks passing in the night – and the sound of their horns. Deep, reverberating, welcoming… happy, to me. I grew to love this sound. I would imagine them passing, brightly lit up, loaded with some exotic cargo for some exotic destination. I imagined the drivers would smile to eachother as they passed. And I remember feeling, warm. Safe. Loved. Happy. I felt I belonged there, in that moment. I imagined, that that moment, was mine.
And now, everytime I hear one of the trucks out in the yard, at that moment it sounds it’s horn, about to travel that same road again, for that brief instant, for that brief moment, I am taken back to that long ago passed moment in time and once again I am a small child, tucked up in bed, excited for what lies ahead, my little sister sleeping soundly next to me, the hushed voices of my parents in the next bed. The bright light of a cigarette cherry floating in the darkness. And I feel warm, and safe, and loved, and happy… and I feel like I belong again.
It is an endearing story, the romantic version, I like to think, of why I now work in transport. Of course, in reality, transport is nothing like that. But the six year old little girl in me still remembers that feeling. And I get to relive that feeling, if only for a moment, everyday.