I always look out windows. Wherever I am, whatever I’m doing, there’s a hope of actually seeing the world. Sitting in the back seat of the car next to my granddaughter it was interesting to watch her young eyes peer out the window at the world. I wondered how different her world must look from one weighed down with a lifetime of experience and opinion.
Mornings find me in an oak rocker with a bowl of cereal, gazing at nothing in particular, looking out the window as the day takes shape. But the looking drives me like nothing else. When I’m tired and exhausted you won’t find me rising to answer a phone or take on another chore, but I’ll always take another look out the window.
Riding is like that. I’ll always ride one more mile — to see what’s out that road window ahead.
The Vespa, which takes on such a large presence in my mind when riding, is revealed as an insignificant speck in the world from another perch. This photograph reminds me of the difference between riding and photography. One is an active engagement through the world while the other feels more passive and voyeuristic. Suppose a photographer running through a war zone may feel differently.
On this morning ride I found myself standing again on a road wondering what I’m looking at. A gravel road? My Vespa scooter? Some unformed feeling of life vanishing before me? I can’t really say — then or now. But like Neo in the film The Matrix, it’s as if I’ve just been told that world I’m in is the “mental projection of your digital self.”
When I see other riders on the road I wonder sometimes what they’re thinking. If their thoughts take them down these twisty turns and flights of imagination. Or whether they’re free and just feeling the wind.
For me, I seem to always be looking out the window, hoping to see something new or different.
The Vespa sits a few feet away ready to transport me to work one more time. I wonder what I’ll see…