We speed around on complex compounds, which might as well be superstitions for all that we understand them. We put our faith and our lives in the hands of those who play with nature. They convince us it can be improved upon; faster, lighter, stronger, better.
I was recently taking a journey on a coach, where I was sitting near the back, above the rear wheel arch. As we accelerated onto a slip road, joining a dual carriageway, there was a huge bang and I witnessed a football-sized piece of black rubber fly past my window. The coach began to shudder and sway violently from side to side. It was at this point I realised how fast we were going, and I could instantly sense the driver struggling to control this enormous vehicle.
The driver did manage to stop the coach safely and we were eventually asked to get off and transfer to another local bus service. Upon leaving the coach, we were directed to walk back past the blown tyre. I saw the remnants of the shredded rubber; a nest of black snakes spewing out from the darkness of the bus’ underbelly.
I thought of all the times I have used public transport, and of all the people who have made that journey before me. All the people speeding along in their cars and on their motorbikes, or tearing through the stratosphere at hundreds of miles an hour, propelled by nothing more than fire.
Where are we going? What is the hurry?
I think it’s time to reconsider time.