Virtual Bourgeois

Just An Analog Guy Trying to Upgrade For a Digital World

A Tale from the Road

Posted by Gerald on October 1, 2008

Every day I drive 25 miles along a two-lane rural highway between our two campuses.

Every day, going each way, I pass a long closed BBQ restaurant of the sort that is so common around here in NC.  I know nothing about this restaurant or its history.  The old light-able sign, dating from the 60s, or possibly the 50s, still stands guard over an empty unpaved parking lot.  Next to it is a small building with decaying gray wooden walls and sagging old window screens.  It looks from the outside life the sort of place that had an open counter and maybe a few small booths along the outside windows.

Every day I pass this building and wonder about the moments that might have taken place there.  Family meals, stops by travellers along the highway (maybe before the interstate moved so much traffic away?), first dates among local kids, jokes told, little intimacies shared – all of those things that people bring to restaurants.  I don’t know if they happened, but I always wonder.

Can you be nostalgic for a place you’ve never been?


One Response to “A Tale from the Road”

  1. bridgett said

    Yes, you can. And you’ve captured the central insufficiency of history as a practice — most of what matters to people will never be written down.

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