Dressed in an oversized green collared shirt, man jeans and man shoes I glimpsed in the mirror and laughed. This farm was going to swallow me up, but I sure looked the part.Cowboy walked to the passenger side of the truck and adopted an authoritarian, take no shit kind of tone
“Get in, you are driving.” He said.
I had never seen this side of him before. I dare not argue.
I jumped into the front of the truck. It was filthy from splashes of mud from the recent rain.
The steering wheel looked as though it had been eaten by a hungry bull. The place where the horn is usually beeped in emergency road rage situations was missing.
All that remained was the skeleton of a steering wheel. I did not ask what had happened to the body of the wheel fearing it might unnerve me as I tried to push the seat forward.
I wanted to be as close as I could to the array of pedals on the ground.
Somehow I felt if I sat right on them I would be safer. The seat wouldn’t budge. I smiled, nervously.
I had only ever driven automatic girly cars through smooth flat roads. Suddenly dressed like a Cowboy I was in the drivers seat of some kind of farm truck bewildered by the purpose of the gear stick.
I did so and suddenly I was driving the Beast.
Granted, I did not take the Beast over 40kms an hour. Fear clung to me even though I was driving around an open paddock in some of the flattest country on Earth.
In my mind, I was four wheel driving through the Kimberleys and the slightest bump on the road was going to cause the Beast to roll. My lack of grasping of how to put the Beast into 2nd gear could lead the Cowboy and I to an untimely death in the rugged terrain of the flat open paddock.