One day, standing by an abandoned diner on Highway 62, sipping coffee (that I'd made myself), I looked at my feet and realised I'd missed something: the dirt here was a palimpsest, marked with the tracks of tired travellers in search of gas and coffee, U-turners and break-takers. Quartz fragments had blown into the troughs formed by tyre treads. Miniscule pieces of dried plant - leaves, thorns, twigs - completed the complexly-textured surface. My own footprints and tracks were there too, until the wind blew once more or another person pulled in, erasing my marks with their own.
The highway was newly-laid asphalt, closed-packed, unmarred by pots or scrapes and marked with fresh paint, a bold and seemingly permanent contrast to the ever-shifting dirt. It too, though, was marked with wind-blown dust and ingrained dirt from the tyres of passing vehicles, recording their passing-through.
Here were two very different, adjacent, surfaces, yet both capable of recording certain events despite this purpose, I feel sure, never being intended. This compelled me to think about how we could be in a constant state of mark-making, leaving traces of our movements and actions on our environment minute-by minute, day-by-day, an unintentional record of our lives.