Monte or Bust


Monte or bust

The sun was on the highway, wheels began to spin. Forty cars of value with every kind of trim. The race was on for real, Monte Carlo now or bust. You hope the engine’s gonna hold, get rid of the rust.
They hadn’t been but forty yards till they heard a great big pop. An ancient dark blue Daimler had come to sudden stop. The red Ferrari just behind, missed him by a wheel. Drove away cursing loud, tyres in a squeal.
Hispano Suiza, Bentley, Rolls, all the names were there. Running boards and thermos flasks, wind blowing in your hair. Hey ho for the open road, life of Riley indeed. Now we’re all like Mr Toad, shooting up on speed.
Up the front the brand new cars, Alfa Romeos, Mini Coopers, racing Saabs, keeping on their toes. At the back the nobler beasts, getting there’s the aim. Maybe take a couple of weeks, slower if it rains.
Now unbeknownst to everyone there was plot afoot. To stop the cars from getting there by blowing up the route. Some people feel to save the Earth, driving should be banned. Back to horse and buggy, that’ll be just grand
So just outside of Briançon there’s a dangerous curve. Take it a damn good speed, you’ve got to have the nerve. Round the bend a little bridge, easy to destroy. All the cars would fail to stop, go tumbling off like toys.
Now I don’t object to make a point you have to take a stand.  But putting people’s lives at risk, I think that’s underhand. I’d heard about their plans you see and decided what to do. I offered them some dynamite, detonators too.
When it came to blow the bridge, think you’ve got the drift. The fuse went pop, nothing stirred, bridge refused to shift. All the cars went racing by totally unaware. How they nearly came to die in that Alpine air.
I’m writing now from Timbuktu or somewhere else perhaps. Had to go to ground myself, nasty little chaps. They tried to get their money back, called my guarantee. Told them now they knew the risk of buying things from me.
You see I am a gambler but reckless and a fool. Always doing crazy things, have done since school. Drove to Monte Carlo once in a brand new car. But I skidded off that bloody bridge, now I live upon a star.
© Richard Rhys O’Brien July 2009