Any Given Sunday

By Anna Mitchael

You’ve seen a lot of roads in your day, I bet.

Big roads. Small roads. Highway roads. Roads that dead end. Roads that go on forever with parties that never end. There’s a road not too far from here you should take a trip to see. When you get to this road and roll down your window, you will hear the old friend you had almost forgotten. Your friend that is the enemy of toddlers and ad executives everywhere: silence.

Unless a cow is nearby. Then you will hear silence, moo, silence, moo, moo.

Or if all that peace and quiet filled you with a funny feeling you don’t recognize, a feeling that, if pressed, you might describe as uncontainable rapture, then you will hear, “Hello world! It’s good to see you looking so fine on this beautiful Sunday.” Even if you aren’t the sort who usually talks to nature or yourself, drives down this road are known to inspire unusual behavior.

For example, even if you aren’t a details person, you might note the asphalt shimmering in the sunlight. You might get caught up in how the tall grass sways back and forth, occasionally revealing a Bush’s chicken box here or a Coors Light can there. Evidence of humanity. Proof that the road is used. Though the people who drive it Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday will not see the road as you do. For the true experience you have drive it on a Sunday, during the hours between noon and nightfall. You can’t be in a rush. You can’t have a destination other than: a new road. And just like the singing popcorn says before the movie starts, it will be more enjoyable if your cellphone is silenced.

Be prepared for strange things to happen. If you have a burden sitting heavy on your shoulders — or worse, your heart — you might feel it lift a bit. Maybe it’s the fresh air flooding the car, I’m not sure. I don’t pretend to know why these things happen on the road, only that they do.

If you always have a list of things to do running through your mind — people to email, places to go, empires to build. On this road that list might move to the backseat. (If that idea makes you nervous, you definitely need to find this road.)

If you thought you needed music to get pumped up in your car, you might be surprised when excitement hits because you spotted a white jet cloud spreading across the big, blue Texas sky. Or because you caught sight of a farmer out working the fields, as it has always been.

By the time you turn the car around and head back home you might very well find this road has changed you. Maybe not in a way that someone else can see, but for this bit of time it hasn’t mattered what anyone but you could see. And maybe that will stick.

Maybe some of that space you saw in the sky will have worked its way into you. Maybe that uncontainable rapture or that rush of excitement will have settled into a feeling you do recognize — the feeling of a win. Because no matter who you are or what you are fighting against in your everyday, anyone who is looking for new perspective can win on this road. Just by going out for a Sunday afternoon drive.

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