Thursday, September 20, 2012

Roscoe's Gates


Roscoe turned onto Cap Tram Road and eased through the gears. He put his arm out the window and leered down the narrow road looking for logging trucks. The reflection of the trees in the olive paint drifted over his hood like an old home movie. The sun was just below the tree line and the dim yellow lights reached out from the front of his car, like tear drops in the twilight. He eased off the shoulder and pulled up his emergency brake. He got out and unlocked the metal gate that matched ten others on this road. Those gates had nothing behind them but land with ancient double track, that never saw use outside hunting season. He pulled in the V.W. and locked the gate behind him. He could hear the grass dragging on the pan under his car until he reached the tree line and the hidden automatic gate. He idled while the gate swung open to let him on the paved one lane drive. He cleared the trees and rolled onto the gravel in front of his house. The sliding garage door opened and he slowly pulled in. He glanced over at the Bungartz tractor, it needed new plugs and a distributor. The old BMW motorcycle needed to be started and run for a while. He wondered why he bought it. It was adapted with a thirty six horse V.W. motor and the look of it, and knowing he could work on it, convinced him to buy it. After one wobbly trip down the drive, he pushed it back and never rode it again. The old tractor had a VW motor too. It was a temperamental beast and required constant attention. He loved the original orange sheet metal and yellow wheels, that were both aged with a fine patina. He looked around the old garage. Everything was neat as a pin. The finish on the tongue and groove was up to date and all the tools were clean and organized. He loaded some drop cloths, paint trays and bushes into the back of the car. He rooted around in a corner and found several packages of shingles. He stacked them on a towel in the front seat. Walking to the house, he stopped to look out upon the back ten acres. Those were his fields, and the last he would ever know. It was getting dark sooner these days, but he had more affection for this seasons sky. The sun was losing its grip and the indigo was beginning to show the first stars. It was almost fall.