“You drove here?”
The Mate and I have become used to that question over our decades together–especially the last six years since we’ve added an annual Washington-to-North-Carolina sojourn to our regular Bay Area jaunts.
Why drive? I’ve been musing on this topic for the past several hundred I-5 miles. Thought I’d share the results.
1. Falling back in love with America. When you love someone, you notice tiny details, like the wrinkles at the corner of your sweetie’s smile. On road trips, I like to notice transitions between my beautiful country’s beautiful sectors. “Look–first redwood! We’re officially in coastal California!” “Aha–sagebrush! We’re in the Mountain West.”
2. Discovering special unknowns. Like the sign on Oregon’s Rt. 199 that advertises “Sweet Cron.” Or, for that matter, the jaw-dropping Smith River that Rt. 199 is honored to shadow.
3. Strengthening that marriage glue. The Mate does 80% of the driving. I do 100% of the Spanish studying, music listening, blogging, navigating and sandwich-making. Both of us are in our happy place–2 feet apart, but in two separate worlds from which we blow kisses and share smiles when we see a sign for “Sweet Cron.”
4. Bike paths. Hiking trails. (Not many of those in an airport.)
5. Old friends along the way–really a combination of #s 1-3. They remind us who we are, why we love each other, why we love them, why we love this country. Because we can just drive up to their door…and hear them say, “You drove here?”