I often stream this song when I’m walking around on warm, sunny days.
‘The Way’, by Fastball, came out in nineteen ninety-eight, a particularly pleasant, enjoyable and successful time of my life. A jaunty song with several beat change-ups, it had easy to hear and understand lyrics. The song seemed to be telling a story about adults running away.
Anyone could see
The road that they walk on is paved in gold
And it’s always summer, they’ll never get cold
They’ll never get hungry
They’ll never get old and gray
You can see their shadows wandering off somewhere
They won’t make it home but they really don’t care
They wanted the highway
They’re happier there today, today
Later, while driving around, I learned from a radio show that the song was about an elderly couple who ended up missing. The wife had Alzheimer’s and the man was recovering from brain surgery, yet, they made the amazing decision to drive to a festival. Several weeks later, they were found dead in a ravine, several hundred miles off course. Fastball speculated that they’d decided to go off in another direction.
Whenever I think of this song, and it’s often, it seems, because it gets stuck in the stream and keeps looping through, I think of an elderly couple in sunshine, running, laughing and playing, hiding from and evading their children as they enjoy a childlike day.