It’s 4 a.m.
I drove through the night.
There is a peace this hour.
There is no traffic -no people talking- no movement, but for we few, who must deliver.
If you awaken at 4 a.m. and get out of bed, take a moment to savor silence.
Walk to your front door and step out- just a moment – no one will see.
Your belief in magic; which you suppressed since childhood, will return.
The wisps of fog play misty games swirling and spinning over lawns.
There is a feeling of waiting that envelopes the senses.
Take a deep breath.
Sniff the air a minute. Smell that?
That is 4 a.m. air- the cleanest hour of air most of you will ever experience.
For, in this hour more trees breath than cars.
More flowers wear scent than the human peacocks.
This is the hour when nature sighs in relief and exhales splendour.
I drove through the night to get to 4 a.m.
There! I see a parking area.
Exhaustion is assaulting me.
I pull in, to find there is only one place to park.
Parallel parking time.
I am so tired I almost choose to drive on.
One eye nods off and the other threatens to follow.
I set up, throw it into reverse and slide truck and trailer into place.
I look around, feeling superior only 4 a.m. watches sigh.
I turn everything off.
No need to run the air 4a.m. is chilly.
I crack my windows and let in the spicy night air.
My bed calls.
5 a.m. is quickly approaching and I must rest.
I fall the long distance to sleep.
CRASH BANG HOOOOONNNNNKKKK!
It’s 8 a.m.
It’s been a long night. I stop in a Vermont truck stop to eat and take a break. Sitting at a table on the end of the diner I am struck at the mix of regular and transient guests. The tiny town is placed perfectly to receive a combination national and international traffic. On my right I hear french. Behind me in the store two men converse in rapid fire Spanish. A soccer mom brings in her daughter and teammate to sit at the counter for burgers. The smell of homemade bread and cooking bacon are pervasive. A large group comes in with the expressive hands and accents of true Irish Bostonians. The silverware clinks and plates clash. Everyone is made to feel like family by the welcoming staff, as they bustle around smiling and chatting. In the left rear corner I see the silver haired beauty who is waiting that section lean over to slap an elderly gentleman’s hand as they laugh together. The soccer girls jump up and run past me to the restrooms. A loud scream startles the crowd into silence. We all turn to see a red faced girl throwing a fit. Her mother picks her up and she squeals “No time out in the Jeep!” a very frazzled mom sweeps past me saying “Yes” the large group whom she had been a member of, sits quietly for a bit then leaves without eating. The french couple leaves and a few minutes later a male and female trucker arrive; wrapped up in getting to know one another as fast as possible. They sit shoving as much of themselves as words permit into one meal. The cook dumps an avalanche of ice in the bin. Through the door behind me a family enters two young girls in tow. The girls are dressed whimsically in partial princess, ballerina, school girl attire. The husband and wife smile at each other as the girls run to claim a booth. Along the counter I see three lone truckers; islands in the flow of traffic. They say nothing and look nowhere. Exhaustion has claimed their complete attention. The couple in front of me exclaims at a sudden rain. The elderly man at the counter checks his watch and places his hat upon it’s perch.
As fast as they all came they all leave. The rush cycles out. My sweet bespecticaled waitress asks me if I need anything and I ask for the check. Time is running short. I must hit the road but for these few moments I shared life with these few people.