Home. I’m embarrassed to admit it, but when I turned onto the road to my house, I wept, I really did. “Home,” I said, “home,” and blew my nose. Who knew?
I came back with an aching back and bronchitis, but I’m not sorry I went. I’m glad I got to see Santa Fe and Taos and Manitou Springs. America is vast and beautiful. You have to drive across it and see it at ground level to realize that.
So what have we learned? It is good to get away by yourself sometimes. I would travel alone again but I’d fly next time. I am simply too old and achy now to drive across country without someone to spot me on the driving. And navigate.
Living out of your car and hotel rooms gets old rather quickly. It isn’t normal. It’s discombobulating.
You don’t need fifteen books for a two-week trip. Thirty bottles of water is about right though.
There is road construction going on in every state in this country. For sheer number of projects and inconvenience though, Minnesota gets a big gold star. Why, I wonder, do they close the freeway down to one lane for five miles in either direction of the small area where they are actually working. Perhaps I will write Amy Klobuchar, and she can get to the bottom of it.
But did I find enlightenment? Yes, I think I had a couple of enlightening moments. I’m not going to go into the details, but I will say that enlightenment lies somewhere between your idea of what it should be and what you get. And I remembered things I know very well but tend to forget.
What I have is immeasurable. I have three daughters who are loving, compassionate and fun to be with. I have three sons-in-law who are kind, honest men. I have six grandchildren who are a joy in more ways than I can name. I have amazing friends, good people who persevere in life and keep trying to do what’s right. And all these people put up with me – my laziness, forgetfulness, impatience and weird sense of humor. I have done nothing to deserve all this, but there you are. It is good to go alone into the desert once in a while. It wakes you right up.