On Road Trips

I love and I hate road trips.

I've taken a road trip through Southwest Colorado and I loved it. Even on days where we spent 4-8 hours at a time in the car. Yet, sometimes driving the 4 hours to Tablerock is a bore. And the 2 hours to Columbia a pain in the ass.

I've come to realize that maybe it was because Colorado was something new, exciting. I had never seen scenery like I saw there before. It was also part of the trip. Sure, we were always trying to get somewhere – to the Grand Canyon, to our campsite, to a grocery store that sold beer – but the drive itself was part of the trip.

It's not about the destination, it's about the journey. Right?

I've driven east a number of times. Childhood vacations, trips to Florida, more recent trips to D.C. and that drive. Ugh, that drive. It just bores me to death. Maybe because I've seen green, rolling hills before. Maybe because I'm with my parents so we mostly exclusively stop at McDonald's.

I'm sure I'd enjoy it more if we stopped off in Nashville, Louisville, small towns along the way. If we stopped at little local diners to eat instead of fast food. If the radio stations weren't baseball games or classic rock. If my friends were in the car to goof off with.

For this long Thanksgiving weekend trip, I honestly thought about paying almost $700 for plane tickets (and now they are down to like $500 and super tempting). But that would be such a waste. (Right? Right?!)

I'm almost done with Bill Bryson's "The Lost Continent" about his travels through America's small towns (which is an excellent read, by the way), and I've got to admit, it has me a bit more inspired about this particular trip. I want to see, and really appreciate, those east coast mountains and forests. I want to pull off on some scenic lookouts. I want to sit down for lunch or dinner in a little diner or bar.

Now... just convincing my parents.

Bill Bryson The Lost Continent

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