i remember that as a child, when we were living in rwanda, dad and i would spend a lot of time together on weekends. if we were heading out somewhere in the car and mum wasn’t with us, dad would allow me to sit up front mext to him. he’d roll down the windows and drive through the countryside. we’d cross yellow fields and cut through jungles of eucalyptus. and as the car would speed through the smooth dirt tracks, i’d pop my head out of the window and open my mouth wide.

i always thought you could eat air. air had a peculiar taste.

at 50kph, it sure did taste grimy.

i’d try swallowing and gulping and find knots in my neck. it hurt to swallow empty bits of nothing…but the rush of the wind slapping my face really left me little time to worry about the pain in my stomach. i’d swallow even more…and more. till i could stand no more and would plonk myself back into the car seat. seconds later, i’d burp out an outrageous air bubble. dad would break into a big grin and chuckle.

he’d ruffle my air and drive even faster.

i’d turn back out of the window…my mouth open, eyes trying desperately hard to stay open…tears rolling down them becuse of the wind…and the taste of the air in africa…

the smell of the eucalyptus is something that stays with you as a child…forever…


~ by mentalsyrup on May 6, 2009.

One Response to “eucalyptus”

  1. Visual. Fantastic. I wonder if I ever noticed what I consume while I travel in Delhi buses. It’s nearly impossible I’d think, as I often choose to not breathe, as you can imagine the things that make our public transport atmosphere.

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