Yes, the road.

Yes, the road.
Eagle Nest, New Mexico. “People like to drive because driving is actually and symbolically an almost perfect mechanism for escape…there is probably no human being who does not have troubles, real or imagined, from which he at times feels the need to flee.” George R. Stewart.


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Brooklin, Maine, United States
We own a 1975 GMC Sierra Grande 15 in Maine and a 1986 Chevrolet Custom Deluxe 10 in West Texas. Also a pair of 1997 Volvo 850 wagons. Average age in the fleet is 28 years--we're recycling. I've published 3 novels: THE LAW OF DREAMS (2006), THE O'BRIENS (2012), and CARRY ME (2016). Also 2 short story collections: NIGHT DRIVING(1987) and TRAVELLING LIGHT (2013). More of my literary life is at I was a Fellow at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study for 2012-13. I'm an adjunct professor at Colorado College and in the MFA program at Queens University of Charlotte. In 2015-16 I was a Fellow at Harvard University's Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. The Autoliterate office is in Car Talk Plaza in Harvard Square, 2 floors above Dewey Cheatem & Howe. SUBSCRIBE TO THE AUTOLITERATE DAILY EMAIL by hitting the button to the right.

Monday, August 8, 2016

2 International Loadstars, Rough Cut Maine

 I drove an International Harvester Loadstar 1600 like the truck on the left, working the wheat harvest in Alberta in 1976. Following the combines up and down the windrows, as they threshed and spilled the grain, which we raced into the elevators in town, then rushed back for another load. Started threshing at 10 am or as soon as the dew was off the crop and kept going until the moisture settled down again, sometimes 1 or 2 AM. Spooky out in those enormous fields at night. Coyotes waiting for rabbits flushed from the wheat. Getting disoriented lost out in those fields, trying to navigate by the stars and the moon. The trucks were set up as grainers with wooden boxes. I found the identical truck to mine in Clayton, New Mexico a couple years back.
We've posted a bunch of grainers--from Saskatchewan, mostly and the Dakotas. One for sale in North Dakota. Here's one I saw in Kansas. And then there was Toby Clark's '52 Chevy (below), an Alberta grainer, in which we made the drive from Banff to the Big Bend, at least twice. Blue highways the whole way because we couldn't do Interstate speeds; and we got bad April winds coming north along the Rocky Mountain front range and the canoe trailer kept flipping over--in Vaughn, New Mexico and Provo, Utah, and some other places, and we met a lot of welders en route who kept adding ballast to the thing, but those winds are something else in spring...That's me, and beard. Yikes. I look like a Brooklyn hipster ("Artisanal coffee, anyone?") and I think it's Deer Lodge, Montana and that's the old Montana State Prison in the background.
(See Michael Taylor's piece in Hemmings' on the Sedgwick(Maine) VFD Car Show and the 2 Internationals.)

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