I want it to go back where it came from.
I hate progress.
The work men send me some curious looks when I walk past them. The fish monger has arrived minutes before. There is a narrow spot left between the Villager who Lives Abroad’s granite wall and growling metal.
I slip through.
The fish monger is just opening the back of his van, we greet each other. Although I like this fish monger, I preferred the previous one because the banter between him and villager O over prices was always far more epic. I stare with some disinterest at the fish in the back of the van, then back at the truck which has started to transform the old lane into modernity. It’s going to look obscene. I know it is. I might joke about going to buy roller skates but I hate the thought of this lane being turned into Possibility Streetview.
I don’t want my village on Streetview.
It is as if the truck is spilling hot chocolate sauce on the lane, the 100% pure variety. That observation perks me up slightly, although it doesn’t change reality.
The end result is modernity indeed but a rather clumsy one. The patch in front of Villager S’s house has not been done because the truck couldn’t turn correctly, she tells me, and that gives me hope. “It will turn grey soon.” she reassures me.
And strewn with hay. Maybe I should trust that the village is similar to the forces of nature, a bit of concrete and tarmac isn’t really going to stop it. Not really. Not yet.
Just like the laws coming from Europe doesn’t stop the villagers from washing the pig tripe in the river during the yearly pig slaughter. It doesn’t stop them from selling fresh eggs in the local shops. It doesn’t stop them from selling their homemade liquor to the bars in the cities.
I walk down to the spring to get water when I see them.
The big deep hoof prints of villager T’s horse in the newly laid tarmac.
And if I didn’t love this place enough, I suddenly love it a bit more.