He didn't even know what day of the week or what month it was. It had been a while since even time had lost almost all significance.
He was seeing the fading sun of the evening, a few hours from one of those summer sunsets that last so long and slow that seem never to end beyond the horizon.
Almost with the same listlessness he was driving along one of the world's hairiest and most scenic drives veering vertiginously around the jagged mountains, providing vista after stunning vista_ through the valleys' shortcuts and the distant soccer fields that little by little were being obfuscated by the sun setting shadows.
Along the curves, while becoming aware of the so many times he had distractedly lost the beauty of those shimmering landscapes, he felt an increasing shudder as he was getting closer to his destination.
Soon it would be Christmas day, he thought...but a sad day...he knew where he was going_to a very silent place...devoid of Christmas cheer...
He could only hear the engine noise of the old car he was driving, that hesitated at each change of gears, in the tortuous hills along the usual roadway_ so he decided to turn on the radio.
He was scanning the frequencies looking for a station with clear sound, but found nothing as he was too far from the city. He kept on that dull buzzing of the radio as background _ preferring it to the gasping sound of the engine.
His mind was full with unspeakable thoughts and embattled feelings, when suddenly all that noise, disappointments, sadness, and the endless curves of the road, began to get on his nerves.
Frustrated, he took his eyes off the road for a moment, by now convinced, as he was, to know all its contours by memory…and looked directly at the radio dial while searching for a clear station_
He looked up just as the car, moving too fast, was at beginning of a dangerous curve; he needed to quickly slow down… He knew his brakes needed work, so by instinct he stepped hard on the brake pedal while at the same time pulling up the hand brake lever.
The tires were somewhat worn from the years of driving and he had been meaning to replace them.
The car lost the bond with the road and began to abruptly slide along its brink towards the precipice. In a lucid moment he tried to reach and open the driver's side door but, fortunately, the car came to rest with a thump.
But, out of the windshield, he could only see the void beneath him. He wanted to exit the car but he was petrified with adrenaline sweat sliding slowly from the temples down under his chin.
Looking out he realized he had ended on the edge of a chasm. The valley by now almost completely suffused in sunset shades…a huge darkening hole ready to swallow him down below.
His hand and arm stiffened and all his muscles, from the forearm to the shoulder, tense in a vise grip on the hand brake lever.
He was still, helpless, unable to move…completely blocked, unable to even move a finger.