Time to Dream: an old Land Rover
June 26, 2015
What if I leave?
To go on a long trip and maybe never come back …
During our weekly run my dog Vlinder and I pass a blue Land Rover. And every time I see that Land Rover I have the same thought: what if I leave? The Land Rover is not that special: old and rusty, he looks likes he already has a lot of kilometers under his wheels.
But still, every time I see this car my imagination starts spinning around the same thought. Running is time to dream. What if I buy a Land Rover and just leave? To discover all those places I’ve never been. All those places I would love to visit. Just travel, explore and write.
I would drive from Paris to Chartres. In the cathedral I watch the blue light shine through the stained glass windows. In the Abbey of Fontevraud I visit Eleanor of Aquitaine, the lady who centuries ago was queen of France and later queen of England. She is buried in the Abbey next to her son the legendary Richard Lionheart. I bow down and take a trip to Venice, because there is no reason to take the shortest route. For years, I want to go to Venice and now I reread Cornelia Funkes ‘Scipio, prince of thieves’ Venice calls me even more. This sunken city full of dragons, golden winged lions and horses made of stone.
Along the Mediterranean coast, I feel the wind and I smell the sea. I cross the mountains and for the first time in my life I set foot on Spanish soil. Via Lisbon (yes, another detour!) and Sevilla I drive to Tarifa. And there, in that little town in the southern tip of Spain, I stay for a while. I stroll along the beach and talk to the whales and dolphins. I feel the sand between my toes and I watch the sea. Morocco. So close, just across the narrow sea.
Africa, my beloved Africa calls.
Of course I can not resist Africa, so I ship the Land Rover and sail to Tangier. I drive to Chefchaouen, the blue city at the foot of the mighty Rif Mountains. Strolling through the souks, I discover the hidden side of the Imperial City. And then, when nobody is watching, I disappear into the Sahara. To jump from the magnificent sand dunes of Erg Chebbi. Jumping from sand dunes is just so much fun! I explore Africa, deeper and deeper. The jungles swallows me and I see lions and rare mountain gorillas.
Then I miss little foot steps beside me. As always, when I just dream away, Vlinder follows her nose. Fortunately she obeys perfect. I whistle and there she comes, running towards me in full speed. Her mouth full with whatever eatable she found. I sigh. No change I will get my dogs into Africa.
So leaving is not an option. A shorter trip to Africa then? Botswana? Mozambique? Namibia?
Vlinder sniffles the Land Rover. She looks at me expectantly.
Tarifa, the Bay of Gibraltar. That should be possible?