With the right words, I can try to talk about how it felt to lay my head back and listen to that Uncle Tupelo song when he drove away from the prairies, into the foothills. The heat of the car seat on the back of my legs, the seatbelt tucked under my arm, the feeling of the road beneath us and the endless sky above.
We do the best we can with words. But it's a losing battle most of the time. It's with love that I struggle to admit they always fail. No matter what words we invent, I'll never tell you how I really felt the first time I saw the Rocky Mountains. No words can transfer that feeling to you. You might relate, you might imagine, but you won't experience it. Much as words allow us to share, they reveal our separateness.
But here's a story anyway: One day we drove to Bragg Creek and got ourselves some peach pie. It was late summer, I remember that. And the car was borrowed from one of our profs, the 80's Crown Vic with the bumper sticker "Just say no to sex with pro-lifers". I don't remember what spurred us to go that day, to borrow a car just for pie. Maybe there was a bigger mission, but it's lost to memory now.
But we went to Bragg Creek and pulled up to the diner, walked in and ordered two servings of peach pie with cream. And I can't remember what the diner looked like, so that if we were to go there again today, we'd probably look at each other and ask, was this the place? But we'd reason that there can't be too many pie shops in a town off a road called Cowboy Trail. And Bragg Creek peach pie will forever be the pie that every other pie isn't.
Today, Cowboy Trail and Sandusky seem far away. I live in a place with road names more Irish than anything; Avondale and Avoca, Clarendon and Kilbarry. And there are more Panameras than white pick-up trucks in this neighbourhood. It changes everything. You slide into a new paradigm, you want things you never thought you'd need to want. Until you start to spin romantic tales about that late summer day when all you wanted was Bragg Creek peach pie. And it was easy enough to go get some. And that was everything.
Products: Clubmaster RB2156 from Ray-Ban | Sandy dress from Steven Alan | Pauper by OLO | Swallow necklace from Odette | Endless Summer tote from Fieldguided | Peach pie via | K. Jacques Jival Sandal from La Garconne