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One May in 2005 I set off to see how I would fare hitchhiking, in an attempt to relive the past, only to find myself penniless and stranded in a sweltering ape colony that looked uncannily like Deptford on a sweltering afternoon.
Somewhere between ripping sunburnt thighs from car seat plastic, and touching sole on asphalt, I lost my hat. I only knew it when my naked skull began to fry.
A scorching Sunday afternoon and I’m hitchhiking in Spain for the first time in over thirty years. Pushing fifty-five and on the road again. Just for the crack. I feel like a runaway puppy. Heading down the highway south of Conil de la Frontera to see where it takes me.
Yet, as degrees Celsius start to match degrees latitude, a hairless man needs a hat in Andalucia. And there went mine, speeding off in cloud of dust, borne away by a man in a van. I would never see it again. I stick my thumb out.
The summer of 1970 the fabled digit wove a meandering path from London to Lisbon and back. Six countries in as many weeks on twenty-five quid. Along with Gordon. Fresh out of Winnipeg, all Strawberry Fields, magic mushrooms, and still dewy behind the ears. A goofy grin and hornrimmed specs mounted on an upturned mop clad in denim. Gordon. Heady, hippy days of endless horizons. Sleeping beneath tents of star-spangled skies on mattresses of grassy meadows. I never slept better. My nights filled with youthful dreams paving the way to each new dawn. read more
Copyright © 2011 Bryan Hemming
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