6 house stays
4 Walmart parking lot sleepovers
I can't believe I didn't lose my mind.
I honestly can't. I told you I thought I would, but instead, this trip gave this mind of mine plenty to hold on to; the exact detour it needed.
When we first planned this journey I was so anxious you would have thought I was going to scale Mount Everest or something really significant and frightening. I mentioned that here. I thought I'd be dying to get home, and I was excited as we crossed the state line into California a few days ago, but I knew I'd miss looking out the window at something different every day. Driving into new territory was something we'd been doing for a month and I'd begun to crave it. I'd miss having Scott inches from me at all times, eating all our meals together and looking at the same things he was. It's not like we held hands every second. There were definitely days when I wished I had a partition around me with the words "don't talk to me" written on it and so did he (although his probably would have said please don't talk to me or something nicer). But, like I said before, as the road became more of our home, we became more of a home for each other.
I have to say, growing up in California and never living outside of it has given me a bit of a one track mind. I'm always so enthralled with what is in front of me- the waves, the beach, the sun. I also feel as though visitors from other places are constantly telling Californians that we are so lucky not to have the humidity or the freezing weather and so on. I was thinking about this the other day when we were in the southern part of the country. We drove by a billboard in South Carolina that read "California Dreaming Restaurant- exit 56" and I said, as Scott read it aloud with a smile, "That's silly. It's awesome here."
California is incredible and I love my home, but after this trip I realized how much I love my country too. I never felt good when I heard about bad weather or tragedies happening in other states, but now when I hear those things I feel an aching in my heart over it because I have loved those places. They have welcomed me, exposed me to different perspectives and have helped me grow. In a small way, it felt like they might have loved me too, like I feel the ocean does in her own mysterious way.
I'm a full-on proponent of road tripping these days. It's such a hands-on way to not only see new places, but to interact with and become a part of them. Don't you agree? I would do it again the day after tomorrow if someone asked me (and paid for it). I've done a handful of "hotel" vacations and they're very relaxing and accommodating, but there's nothing like waking up in the back of your car in a Walmart parking lot in a pool of your own sweat then driving to someplace you've never even seen a picture of. And with that, I give you a picture recap of our trip. And a song! Don't be scared off by the title. This song captures the best thing this trip taught me- We never know how much time we have here, so don't waste what time you have being afraid of what you don't know.
|Yellowstone was our first and favorite stop|
|I've never seen one of these at home|
|this is what I look like when I'm stoked (and haven't had a shower)|
|Chicago bike ride in the rain with friends. Our friend Mark, who took this photo, runs a bike tour company and showed us a good time, despite the rain.|
|there aren't waves in Ohio, I looked|
|our South Dakota to Pennsylvania adventures (including an argument after sleeping behind Chipotle) can be found HERE|
|the first time either of us surfed the East Coast was in Rhode Island|
|Rhode Island wedding with the DeMint family|
|sisters in the city|
|I had to turn this photo black and white to make the greasiness of our hair and faces less apparent|
|Dave is a character and a prankster|
|North Carolina surf|
|New Orleans felt like a different country; I've never seen anything quite like the plantation grounds that were covered in these ancient trees|
All the stories from our trip can be found HERE. And finally, thanks for caring about our adventures. Really. It's been so fun sharing them with you!
What's your favorite trip or adventure you've been on?
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