They say that the journey is more important than the destination.
I’m not sure that’s entirely true in every situation, but in the case of the road trip I’m fairly confident in saying that the journey is, at the very least, equal in value to the destination.
A handful of years back, my roommate and I would go on mini-road trips during the summer to various baseball stadiums. One year we hit up Toronto. Another year we took in Cleveland and Pittsburgh. The only rules were home games and seven hours or fewer of traveling (each way, not combined).
In both cases, the destinations were really amazing (I mean, as amazing as Cleveland can be, sure). It was really fun to get to see those ballparks, to explore those cities, to travel.
But, for me, the definite highlight was the journey. There’s so many parts to the road trip that are fun–the random stops along the way, the radio stations you pick up, the music you bump–but easily the best part is the beginning.
You’ve loaded all your shit into the car, you’ve got your snacks and your gear and your waters. If there’s a God in this world, the sun is shining and the sky is clear. You lower your windows, slightly put on the AC, turn on the navigation and crank the fuck out of your music.
Carefree, as a descriptor of the feeling you have at this moment, isn’t a carefree-enough term. It’s beyond that. It’s so devoid of concern for anything other than absolute fun and total enjoyment that you’re in a state of pure bliss.
That’s what starting a road trip feels like.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Getting in the car for the ride back to Hoboken from Pittsburgh. Giddy up.