Sunday, May 31, 2015

500 Words. Day 9. Epic Road Trip

The open road beckons...

Never again will I type an entry for this challenge "experiment" while on my phone or while drinking. My mind was all over the place last night, and thinking about that entry makes me cringe. Also, typing on my phone was a pain in my ass. Never again.

This was what I had started writing yesterday while traveling to the wedding. I could not write anything coherent or worth typing out so this will do.

I'm trying to type this while on my way to a wedding. Sitting in the passenger seat of a moving vehicle, on my laptop, with the windows cracked partly because there is a problem with the air conditioning. It’s a slightly hot 87º with the sky getting darker and darker as the clouds above seem to be threatening to split open and pour water on our heads.

As soon as I wrote that last sentence, the clouds delivered on that promise. Rolling up the windows and turning the emergency flashers on to signal a drastic decrease in speed due to the limited visibility in front of us while we drive through the deluge of rain drops. It feels as if you are in your own private ark sailing through the rain, patiently waiting to deliver yourself to the next dry spot of pavement. My thoughts are inconsistent and varied today, so my writing shall be as well.

What are some things that I want to share today?  I could go on and on about my love of the rain, or even the experience of driving through it, but I’m not really motivated to find those words right now. I could talk about  how when I was younger, my family moved around every three to four years, so I was constantly taking long road trips from one state to the next. I would play games with myself or my mom to pass the time, sometimes trying to find all 50 states license plates or the A-B-C game of looking out for words that started with letters of the alphabet. Sometimes I still play that game with others if I’m on a road trip, and we invariably always get caught on Q, X, Y, and Z.

As  I think back to those long road trips of my childhood, only one really stands out. When we moved to Alaska from Kentucky, we took two weeks to drive there, with a stop in Chicago to see my mom’s side of our family. I can’t remember the specific type of truck my dad had, all I remember was the beige brown color with gold specks in the paint. My father purchased a topper in the same color, and outfitted the back bed with foldable carpet covered bench seats. I spent so much time of our trip back there while my parents drove. That was my sacred space where I played Pokémon on my old school game boy, colored, and read as much as I could. Every night we would be in a new town where we would either camp outside of sleep in a hotel room. It was always an adventure, every evening something new and exciting. Some days were packed with amazing sights: Devil’s Tower, Mount Rushmore, Bison next to the car in Yellowstone, Old Ghost towns, The bluest lake ever in Canada, Chief Mountain, Olympic stadiums, a field of prairie dogs.

I really wish I could remember the exact route we took, because I would love to recreate this trip today. Being able to see the touristy sights, the nature, the unique culture and community of the states with a renewed sense of awe. Maybe it’s time to start planning the epic road trip of my thirties.

**Thanks to Kale & Cigarettes for this "not a challenge" experiment.

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