“Put your heart, mind, intellect and soul even to your smallest acts. This is the secret of success.” – Swami Sivananda

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.

IMG_3363Of 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.

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