I had one lift over Easter. It was when I hitched from Newmarket, near where my dad, step mum and little sisters live in Suffolk, to King’s Lynn, where I grew up. My hitch spot was a pull-in at a small mental hospital, just outside Newmarket on the road to Ely. It’s been my hitch spot for years.
I got a lift within ten minutes. And what a lift. Marc was in locally well-known ska band Captain Black No Stars some years ago, and had 7 years living in off-grid communities in Wales. So, we hit it off pretty good. Then when he was about to drop me off he offered me a couple of beers from the brewery he now works at in East London, and then offered to take me for a pint in town. So we had our two pints at a quirky north wootton pub, and he dropped me back in Lynn.
Yesterday I got a lift fairly quickly off a couple. The man works for the council at county hall, but the woman was made redundant a while back. I was so knackered from work/all the travelling I’d done the day before (I only arrived back on the island at 10pm on Sunday..) that I didn’t so much appreciate opportunity to converse…
But, today, with a new sign:
I was extremely blessed to meet Alan, who I had a thoroughly soulful connection/conversation with. One of those times when the driver stops at the dropping off point, but neither of you want the conversation to stop yet so you keep going an extra 10 mins or so. He told me about the real issues that people with severe anxiety and depression have with life in modern society. And we both agreed that modern culture isn’t helping at all – there is no encouragement whatsoever to get out and do things, but the entertainment culture is just getting stronger and bigger, with TVs central to people’s lives. But there was a deeply spiritual side to our conversation, too.
There were a lot of things that Alan said that moved me a lot, and I felt equally moved that he was sharing so much of what meant something to him to me. To me, who had a few minutes before been just a total stranger.
And, what I keep saying is that hitchhiking brings the world together. It really does.