Sunday, October 25, 2009

Writing Prompt: In a Car

At my UConn Teacher as Writer class on Saturday, the instructor asked us to think of a moment in a car... whether it was ourselves or a character we created. This caused me to think of so MANY moments, that I couldn't pick one, so I started writing about how much time we spend in cars in general... here's the rough draft... I would love comments or feedback as I might have to do some polishing up on this one...

A car is a fertile bed for memories...we owe our lives to cars - not just for travel and don't think much about getting in a car, traveling through time and space. But how much of our lifetimes are spent encapsulated in cars? Even the largest SUV is not so big we'd want to remain forever. Yet how much time...?
How many memories, conversations, relationships (familial, friendly, platonic, romantic) are forged in a car?
I lost myself in my mother's big blue VW Vanagon throughout my childhood- a slow 45 mph trip through dozens of worlds, lives, characters as book after book flashed through my fingers like dotted lines on the highway to and from school.
In a car, I cried and sang my way like windshield wipers on a rainy day through many relationships as I drove myself through the congested freeways of love and boyfriends until I found the same road my husband was traveling.
I idled in the back of many a car while my parents drove us to Grandma's or Grandpa's house and boredom caused my siblings and me to backfire until the inevitable "If I have to stop this car...!" silenced our overheated engines momentarily.
A car is sacred as a church - where many a prayer is offered up for relief, guidance, peace, safety and "oh-dear-Lord-don't-let-me-hit-that----!" I believe our guardian angels spend a lot of time perched on fenders.
In a car you can be alone, be yourself... you are a bubble speeding along on this swiftly spinning planet - singing out loud, arguing with yourself, your seatmate, the radio.
Cars take us away, cars bring us home. And they are slow, real-time, compared to the speed with which we do everything these days (email, texting, planes, online transactions zipped to the bank faster than we can turn on the ignition). Cars are beginning to have the ponderous gait of horsedrawn wagons in comparison.
Yet they grant us that one luxury we seem to be spending too quickly -time with ourselves and with others - real-time, not virtual time. For this, I say, we owe our lives to cars.

Now, why don't you try it? What is your most vivid memory that took place in or with a car? Post your response on your own blog and link to it in the comment box below, or just write a quick response on the comment form.


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