Okay so 1,000 miles is exaggerating it just a little bit; it’s more like 900 miles. But anyways, I learned/ remembered a lot while driving all that way completely solo. The very first thing I learned/ remembered might have something to do with the fact that I was listening to Michael Moore’s Dude Where’s My Country, but regardless, it felt like an epiphany. I was on I76 it’s a turnpike, which I know are everyone’s favorite invention. Who doesn’t love to pay 16.45 to drive on a road where the gas stations have free reign to charge you $.30 more per gallon of gas just because you’ve got no other choice. That’s when I realized it. I had 45 miles left on my tank and there were no gas stations in sight. Immediately, I began to panic. What if it’s 80 miles to the next gas station? I’ll never make it! Well, it wasn’t far to the next gas station, but the sign did say “Next gas and food 91 miles.” So, I filled my tank to the brim and debated eating just because I thought I may be hungry in the next hour, but decided against it. Little did I know this was the trick our government pulled on us for years, still do sometimes. 11 miles down the road was another sign, “Next food and gas 80 miles.” They lied to me! They told me that there was a shortage and led me to panic nearly driving me to pay 5x the amount for a piece of shit hamburger in the rest area approved by the turnpike. Those bastards! Okay, that part was from Michael.
The next thing I realized is that tunnels are not nearly as fun when you are the one driving and you have no idea how long they go on for. When I was a kid they were really fun, ooh a tunnel yay. Now, I’m holding my breath for a whole different reason as scenes from Daylight are flashing through my mind. And while we’re on the subject of fear, I realized that low flying planes still make me a little nervous. Though it had been a couple hours after I passed the memorial for flight 93, I still watched warily as a plane looked too low to clear whatever city I was near. It, of course, turned and began a steep ascent but still brought me back to that day. I wonder if it will ever leave my mind.
Also I know now that space travel for me is simply out of the question, unless they have perfected the sleep state thing, because I would go insane. With my cruise control set, no cars in sight, and legs in criss-cross fashion; I blasted Beyonce’s Run the World and realized i had lost it. I was tossing my head around and yelling out the lyrics while intermittently bursting into fits of laughter. Yup, no space travel for me. 10 hours alone in a car and I’d already lost it. That’s also when I realized that we have a profound affect on the moods of others and those moods are seemingly more volatile during travel. As I was all caught up in my rocking out session some people passed and were laughing. And it’s like that isn’t it? You see someone really getting into the music and you laugh and are a different kind of happy, a bit more free. And other times, someone cuts you off and you fly into a rage that you would never think of should the person actually be able to hear you. I also find it quite interesting that people are generally much more polite to each other in rest areas. Perhaps that’s because they are attempting penance for the rage they just flew into minutes before the exit… or was that just me.
1,000 miles to drive a little closer to me. And that’s just the beginning of my three week journey.