14 October 2009

Welding Tanks

I am driving a welding truck, it contains an large electrical generator for arc welding in the bed of the truck and oxygen and acetylene tanks strapped to the side for the cutting torch. The bed of this truck specially crafted to hold these items, and to reenforce the importance of welding, the bed is almost filled by the generator, the compressed air tanks are chained to the side of the truck bed with a slender chain. I was learning how to drive a manual transmission and was between gears. The truck lurched back and forth as I hunted the gear and pumped the clutch, the engine roared and paused, roared again and again. Then the chain holding the oxygen and acetylene tanks let go. The tanks ripped free from the hoses connected to the valve and hit the tarmac. I killed the engine, stopped breathing, locked all of my muscles still. Tales of tanks turning to torpedos danced in my head. A truck driven by a friend of mine is heading towards me, quickly and expertly stops and rushes backwards and the tanks finally stop bouncing and now roll on the pavement. They never land on their valves, do not turn to torpedos. I am spared destruction.

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