The driver has the choice to turn right or left. Two signs, shaped like arrows, indicate that the choices are “this way” and “that way.” Whichever way he chooses, there will always be the curiosity about what would have happened had he turned down the other road.
It’s true that he can travel down one road for a while, realize that it is not the correct path and turn around. On his way back to the intersection, he will revisit the memories that he made while initially traveling down this road. He will never know what he left behind – he had only a preview of where that road led.
The paved roads rest upon the sands of a great desert. Suddenly, he doesn’t trust whoever it was that poured the tarmac or planted the signs, and he accelerates without turning the wheel. His ride leaves the road, the weight of the vehicle compacting the sand below its tires; the inertia of its momentum keeping it from becoming stuck in the sand. He adjusts the throttle, allowing the fuel to flow more freely into the engine. “It’s nice to feed the engine,” he thinks as he races with the Devil over the endless sands.
An aerial view of this scene would allow us to see that there are actually many roads scattered throughout the desert. Many of them are in the shape of recognizable geometric figures – the most common being the oval. Upon the oval roads, various drivers pride themselves that they are headed in the right direction for a while, then, thinking that they are not quite content, they follow the road’s curve until they are headed in the opposite direction. Ah, the freshness that traveling in a different direction brings! Then, as if anticipating their nostalgia for the way things were, the road curves again and brings them back to their former path. They become intoxicated with the sights and smells of familiarity. It is safe. It is home. Rinse and repeat.
Many vehicles are stuck, of course. Their drivers had recognized the limitations of the roads and tried to find their own way. Some of them lost heart and merely took their feet off the pedal – allowing the neutral sand to take hold of them; others ran out of fuel. Some of their skeletons remain in the cars to this day; others made a go of it on foot. Of course, given the strong winds of the desert, their footprints are long gone, as are any traces of their mortal remains.
Far off, there are things called highways. These roads contain multiple lanes and all head in common directions. They are always filled as there is never any shortage of people wanting to join others on a popular journey. Signs along these highways indicate that the travelers have made good choices. No one remembers who put the signs there or whether the path is still (or ever was) good. They just know the word, and they cannot resist the flow.
There is a myth that a unique road exists for each traveler, and if each traveler could find his road, only then could he know his true direction. How to choose when there are so many? The sacred roads must exist beyond the pavement because if they are truly meant for only one person, then no one else would know where to pour them or in which directions they should veer.
Fear and laziness keep the highways populated. Faith is foolishly placed on the ancient signs which read “Good,” and the company within the traffic, which frequently jams, provides enough comfort to pave over the fear in their hearts – like blinders on a beast. Still, it is their choice, and that old silver lining, she spells out that while numerous invisible roads evaporate for want of usage, the lone demon-eyed travelers find that they have all the space in the world.