The sun shone through the window and blinded me. My father was on the phone and my mother tried to concentrate on driving the car. I turned up the music and quickly lost myself in it. I thought of how much trouble and effort it always takes to get all of our stuff in the car and head out on the road. This messed up cycle is part of my ordinary summer, but this year it was different.
The car was packed with bags and the dog did as usual; panting non-stop. By now I’d gotten used to the helicopter sound, breathing in my neck but it still killed me a little bit inside every time we’d take here out for a drive. It was like it was and nobody else really cared that much because we need to drive down this road, at this moment.
The road was empty at this time of the day and the dark woods around seemed calm even though I know that it was wide awake. The snow had gone away, which bummed me out a little bit. The road looked just like every road does, in every country. Trees, fields and a house now and then if you’re lucky. The sun was about to set and we tried to take advantage of the last hour of sunlight. We had to make it to town before nightfall where we could lay to rest for a little while.
Everything was just like it used to be, but we knew that something was missing. We all knew what it was, or whom it was. We used to be four in this car, now we’re only three. Mum, dad and one daughter, not two just one. We all missed her but tried to live just like we’ve always had.
I woke from my daydreaming by mother who was trying to contact me by calling my name. I took my headphones out but she’d already forgotten what she was going to say. After a couple of seconds, the music drowning out everything else, once again. Ed Sheeran played and I remembered that amazing concert he had, the one that I didn’t get any tickets to. It made me sad but a second later I was singing along, quietly. He sang “Save my soul” and my lips made out the words one by one. I made sure to sing quietly because I didn’t want my parents to hear. I never enjoyed singing in the car with mother or father, not without my sister. When we were young we used to have competitions and we sang famous duets together. Now I only sing to myself, quietly.
I looked out the window, only to see tree after tree passing by, nothing else but trees. I pulled my hand back through my hair and pulled it to one side o my head. I was still trying to get used to my new short hair that I impulsively cut in a moment of weakness. It had been almost two years but it still felt weird but somehow it still felt absolutely right.
At nine pm we stopped for dinner and a goodnights rest at a motel, nothing fancy. I know that I can be a bit spoiled sometimes because I’ve stayed at numerous of luxurious hotels but sometimes something that wasn’t fancy or had anything fancy about it at all, just for the thrill of it.
The sun didn’t shine anymore, the treetops were covers in fog and when I looked out the window I only saw the road beside the car. I curled up in my seat and used my jacket as a blanket to try and keep warm. I was cold, hungry and bored but I tried not to show it, I didn’t want to hurt my parent’s feelings. Slowly I feel asleep.
I woke up to the sound of the king of rock’s voice; Elvis Presley, my father sang along like he always does to Elvis’ tunes. The sun was now shining again but not as bright as yesterday. I looked out the window and saw clouds all over the sky. It made the sky look soft, like freshly made cotton candy. I bit my lip, thinking about what I’d say if I got to see him. It all was a mess when I left and nothing me feel worse than sitting in this small car not being able to call. My whole life was a mess; him, my sister and my parents who’d been weirdly overly protective of me the last couple of weeks. My phone lit up and on my screen his name came up. “New message”. I didn’t dare to open it even less to answer it. I’m such a coward.
I rolled the window down, desperately trying to get some air. I knew that we were almost back home. Back to my mess and back to reality. This trip had been a nightmare. I used to have fun at these trips but this year I just felt alone and claustrophobic in that tiny car. When we drove up on our parking spot I’d already opened the car door. I fell out of the car, together with all of the stuff that we pressed up in the backseat because we didn’t have enough room in the back. I didn’t care at all, because I was home.