Leaving the wilderness somehow re-introduces an impatience; an urgency to arrive, to check, to ensure. And, perhaps paradoxically, a longing, for the heimat; to re-assure that it is still there, intact – a haven, a place of familiarity.
Getting through the Middle World becomes a drag, lit up only by occasional moments of amusement or wonder at its idiosyncratic adaptations of progressive society.
It is indisposed, even hostile to lone roadside sleepovers, wanting to herd people into cubicles inside hotels or motels or perhaps the odd fashionable lodge. Self-reliance is essential, but sits awkwardly in it – as in the modern world. The difference, though, is that the Middle World is at best a poor rendering of the modern world, and so, inconvenient.
It is this impatience, combined with frustration over a world that purports to be modern, yet is not, that keeps my hands on the big steering wheel, immersed in the endless drone of the six and the wheels on the tar, on into the night, with stops only for short naps and refuelling.