We developed a strange affection for our night time call at a particular motorway services during our too-ing and fro-ing over the past six months. A supermarket, coffee shop, MacDonald’s and a bookshop clustered round a carpark and sailing in a sea of fields miles from the nearest town. The trucks marshalled in close ranks, curtains around the cab the crew asleep flying in the land of dreams. We watched one of the drivers reverse a huge truck into the smallest of spaces and it was as graceful and skilful as ballet.
The affection doesn’t stretch to wanting to go back. Like two bored kids we have been screaming ‘are we home yet?’ for so long and now of course we are.
The house is gradually taking shape with a very different aesthetic to our last house. My workroom is all 1950’s, contemporary fabrics, a Rowland Hilder print of the Kent countryside and a Poole pottery vase. Benjamin is still working surrounded by boxes like a play soldier in a children’s castle. He is pondering colours to go with some beautiful floral 1940’s curtains given to him by his grandma. We are constructing permanence in a very knowing way.
We chatted to our next door neighbour during the week. She has lived here, in the same house, for 54 years and charted the changes, the ebb and flow of families arriving and then moving on, the gentrification.
So nothing is really happening, yet everything is still in major change. And, somewhere over the hills and fields beside a motorway the orange sodium lights illuminate the trucks and the truckers are bedding down for the night. There is a campervan shaped space in the carpark but we, thankfully, are not there.
Book Illustration – Rowland Hilder
Poole Vase 1956 Image – Hampshire Cultural Trust