2 September 2015

Border Journal: Vehicle Graveyard

Not long after leaving Lough Melvin, Just passed the point where the border turns to go around Co. Donegal I find a whole graveyard of vehicles. There is a school bus, a tipper truck and several cars. They are sat side by side but could not be called parked. Dull pallor, flat tyres and popped seams; they have not moved in years. There is a fire engine, a vintage ford, a 1950s Thames to be exact, with big rounded wheel guards. It still has its ladder on its back. These vehicles are not so much dumped as stored away here on the border.

Someone probably thought they come in useful some day, for parts at least. But the days turned into years and here they still are, crumbling away, a retirement home that nobody visits. Motorcycle skeletons are jumbled together on the ground. The seats have rotted away and exposed the springs. I recognise the Hondas, these used to be popular among farmers. They were basic machines with a small puttering motor but certain elegance around their shapely speedometer, handlebars and the small rearview mirror on the end of thin chrome arms. You don’t see them on the roads any more. I seem to have found the hidden graveyard where they ended up. Tall dandelions are pushing up through their spokes and ribs.