It’s funny how there is always something – something that sparks extra excitement within us. It’s like my heart-rate jumps, I sit up a little taller, I focus a little harder. It almost sounds like I’m in love. And to some extent, I am.
The prospect of another road trip. I know there is always another trip ahead of me, but usually I don’t know when. Without specific dates, I can plug them into a hotel finder or search local events. But now with the dates locked in for Mark Harmon’s charity event in OKC, I have dates. And it’s like something has been lifted off of me. I have that goal, and I want nothing more than to go barreling head-first toward it.
It’s not just the actual trip – it’s the planning, the reading, the maps… I feel like an addict of sorts, checking and rechecking distances and drive times. I know I can comfortably hit 6-700 miles in a day, up as high as 900 if I’ll have a break the following day. I know how much time I need for bathroom breaks and fuel purchases and that I need to add an extra hour for roads I’ve never driven so that I can pull off to take photos.
For the roads I’ve already driven, I have favorite coffee shops and diners, dotted along the route. Favorite bars and restaurants in the cities I know so well.
There are gift-shops and postcards. Tourist information centers and truck stops. The new people you meet. This year will be nearly 7,000 miles of both familiar and unfamiliar territory.
Of all the places I’ll be returning to one this trip, Memphis, TN is my favorite. While I would never live there (own a vacation home, yes), Memphis is a place that I consider to be my ‘Soul-City’. A place where you find yourself letting out a deep sigh, dropping all the negative baggage and breathing in renewed energy. Some places, when I arrive, I spend the first evening in my hotel room, with a bottle of wine after a hot shower. Memphis is one of those places where I can’t get my car unloaded fast enough, as all I want to do is stand in the middle of Beale and watch the excitement move around me.
It’s simply mesmerizing.
So I still have a good four months to go – I foresee several more trips to AAA, numbers of miles and drive times mesmerized and outfits analyzed. But it’s good. These are all things that make me feel alive. I feel more inspired for the gym. I want to read more. I want to write more. I just want more out of life when I have a goal within reach.
It feels good to feel alive again.