A daily feature on my Nook E Reader is Steve King’s Daybook. Professor King’s topic today was Counting Kerouac. He references Jack Kerouac’s The Town and City which was published in 1950, several years prior to On The Road.
While I haven’t read The Town and the City I was struck by the paths referred to by Professor King and think that these three pretty much categorize the paths of almost everyone.
One brother chooses town (to be a farmer near home),
one brother chooses city (to be a Sorbonne student)
and one brother…was on the road again, traveling the continent westward, going off to further and further years, alone by the waters of life, alone, looking towards the lights of the river’s cape, toward tapers burning warmly in the towns, looking down along the shore in remembrance of the dearness of his father and of all life…he put up the collar of his jacket, and bowed his head, and hurried along.
I have friends and family who have chosen to live their lives very close to where they were born. I have friends and family who chose to leave (many as soon as possible after high school) to the city and/or university and, then there are those who take to the road like the third brother.
I grew up in one house, attended grade school, junior high and high school on the same block, went across town to college in my home town. . . so I must be the “chooses town” sibling, right?
Then, I married a California guy, moved to the Los Angeles area in California, had a family, career, finished my Bachelor’s degree. . .so, I must be the “chooses city” sibling, right?
Don’t think so. . .even before we went on the road as full-time RVers we were off traveling every chance we got. One of my three, maybe Russ, once said that we “dragged them all over this country when we were growing up.” Since going on the road full time nineteen years ago we have “traveled the continent” to all 50 states, Canada and even a bit into Mexico.
My 5th wheel home at home on the Mississippi River.
I love to “put up the collar of my jacket, bow my head, and hurry along”. . .the third sibling I am!
Which are you?