I wrote last month of needing to take road trips to places I wanted to see, but I’m learning that the adventure isn’t in seeing something that I could view online or on TV, but taking the steps of plotting my drive, getting in the car, and taking off. For me, the adventure is the journey, not necessarily the destination. The long hours in the car listening to a book and taking slow roads have given me a new appreciation of our country.
For one thing, the road system is amazing. Yes, repairs are needed in places, and I saw plenty of orange pylons, but the intersecting highways take us just anywhere we want to go. Fast on interstates and slow through small communities, I saw Americans moving along.
(By the way, the trucking industry is thriving. A semi-trailer can carry nine cars at a time.)
From small town to city, I saw people at work. The industry of people from state to state fills me with pride in our citizens, who keep this economy humming along.
People are friendly in Arkansas and Louisiana and Mississippi and Florida and Georgia and South Carolina and North Carolina and Tennessee and Kentucky and Indiana and Illinois and of course, in Missouri. Smiles greeted me at all my stops along the way, and those stops were frequent.
At Miramar Beach, Florida, I walked on white sands with friends and in Savannah, Georgia, I walked the historic squares alone.
On my long journey, I learned I can eat alone in a restaurant, and I can deal with minor problems along the way. I trusted my intuition when I decided to stop for the night, didn’t like the looks of a hotel, so got back on the road for a bit until I felt comfortable stopping. I planned to go into Charleston one morning, but the place I was staying outside that great city was so peaceful and serene, I just stayed put, walking the trails by the river. On this journey, I had no one to please but myself, so I made the decision to turn around and start back toward home with a peaceful feeling in my soul instead of seeing more historical buildings and hearing a voice in my head that I’ve missed terribly telling me about the architecture.
My overarching goal on this trip was to see Savannah, and I saw it, a flat Eureka Springs, AR, on steroids. But my journey started with a visit to friends’ condo on the beach, and my last night on the road was with family.
People, not places, drive this country and my journey.