So, I had been planning on a 13 day road trip: Chattanooga, Atlanta, and Boca Raton, but it fell through. And I sat there thinking, what a shame it was that I had ordered all this stuff for my computer so that I could work while on the road, plus I had someone lined up to house sit for me.
Then it occured to me that I had the perfect opportunity to do whatever I wanted. Right in front of me were so many options. I could see any of this country’s natural wonders. I could just pick a direction and see where it led. I could visit one (or more) of any number of people I haven’t seen in ages.
I chose to head to New York City. By car. From Dallas. Yeah, my mother asked me if I wanted her to buy a plane ticket for me (twice), but I think I finally got the point across that the drive would be part of the experience. I’ve never gone on a road trip alone, much less covering this type of distance. I’ve got some ideas on what I want to do next, but right now I need to prove to myself that I can pull this off. So far so good (as the man who jumped off a 50 story building said as he passed each floor).
This feels like I’m returning to who I really am. I have a history of turning so far in on myself, that I forget who I am and just blend in. Interestingly enough, when I get really far into it, I look like a soccer mom, you know, J. Crew chinos and tops. Sturdy and boring. Of course, it’s not really about the clothes. It’s about how I both perceive and present myself. I can’t blend into the background and shine simultaneously. By keeping myself safe and tucked in my shell, I prevent myself from feeling the joy of new experiences.
This morning I had breakfast at the counter at a Waffle House. I turned to the man to my left and asked him if he lived in Nashville (where I was at the time). *I* started a conversation with a random stranger. And nothing awful happened. We just talked. I wish I had gotten a picture of him to post, but I was so involved in the experience, that I didn’t even think of it until I was out of town.
I got into Knoxville about two hours ago, and made a wrong turn downtown. I just kept driving because it is so beautiful here. Then I came across this guy:
Yeah, I need to wander off the highway more often. Literally and figuratively.