Thursday, March 1, 2012

Road Trip

I love to drive.  When I was sixteen I couldn't wait to get my driver's license.  It represented freedom.  With a license I was no longer tied to a house or a specific time.  I could go where I wanted when I wanted.  The day after I bought my first car, I left town and went on my first road trip.  I was working and taking graduate courses.  I had friends in graduate school in another state and I literally drove off the lot and out of town.  I guess like guys, I still remember that first car.  An entire new world opened up to me after I bought it.

I still love to dive.  Give me and open road, billowy clouds in the sky and I could go straight on 'til morning.

Since I was a very young child, I’ve had a fantasy of driving a fast car on Route 66, a twenty-four hundred mile stretch of road beginning in Chicago and ending in Los Angeles. The road predated the superhighways and would meander through towns, cities, and hamlets allowing a driver to see the country as they passed through it.

Photo Credit:  Stock xchg

What freedom. What escape, I thought.  My sense of adventure has never been satisfied.  So you can understand how excited I was when I found these dishes at a yard sale.

There are maps and places of interest all over them.  Not only do you get to revisit in your mind the places you've been or long to see, but you can map out the route as you think about the food you got in those places.

I used maps in place of table cloths.

And the cars were loaned to me by my daughter.  There is a whole collection that my older son passed along to her.  And since Disney's CARS is one of her favorite movies (mine too!) she loves these little toys.

I've drove coast to coast once, but we were in a truck and hauling furniture for an aunt who was moving back to the east after her husband died.  We only stopped to eat and sleep.  So while the country rolled by, I didn't get to visit much of it.

Last year I took two road trips.  The first one was a 2,000 mile journey from the New Jersey to Kansas City, Missouri.  It was great.  My college girlfriends and I decided to meet in the middle of the country and catch up on things without the need to try and couple the trip with visiting relatives or attending activities where you we never get to talk for more than a few minutes.

Going out I drove to just get there.  My first stop was Indianapolis which was where my Freshman roommate lived.  She lives in New York City now.  The next day was another perfect driving day; clear sky, warm temperatures and a long road.  I continued and arrived in Kansas City a dinnertime.

Going out and coming back, the trip was without any police, flat tires, or car trouble.  A beautiful ride with no mishaps.  Can you get any more perfect than that.

We ate.  We talked.   Relived old memories.  I brought the albums and we looked at ourselves with thinner thighs, big hair and the world at our feet.

Coming home, I was free to roam.  I had a week before I needed to be back home.  So I went exploring.  Any exit that looked interesting, I was free to check out.

I've been lucky when it comes to travel.  I was single and without children for a long time.  I used it to see the world, but only saw the United States as I flew over it.  It's great to see it at sea level.  And even better to have time to stop and take stock of all the wonders around me.

What's your idea of the perfect road trip?  I can't wait to go on another one.  I have two planned for 2012, both in the south.  I'm going to Winston-Salem, NC and attending a reunion in South Carolina this summer. 


  1. Replies
    1. Marigene,

      Thank you. Putting it together made me remember that wonderful trip.

  2. This is so neat...what a wonderful find for you...I LOVE it when I can find something that is me. I hope you have a great time on your road trips this summer. I have been wanting to do road trips around here in Texas just to take photos of the old country churhes - they are just so pretty with their white paint and steeples.

    1. Donna,

      We're on the same page. I often go around and take photos of old buildings. Some of them are falling down. Some are gone now, but I have the before pictures. Unfortunately, I did not label them, so anyone looking at them won't know where it is. Gotta do that one day.

  3. Love this post. The first thing that caught my attention was your "tablecloth". I've had that one in the back of my head for a long time. But I so enjoyed how you spoke of your love of driving. Having just come back from a road trip, you sure struck a cord. I'd love to have you link to Seasonal Sundays this Sunday.

    - The Tablescaper

    1. Don't you just love the things you can see when you drive? Even if you're on a highway, there is still the glimpse of things in the towns.

  4. What an interesting post. My husband hates driving places but when I'm with my girlfriends it's so much fun! Your table was so unique and clever and those map dishes are perfect! I'm taking a little (3.5 hours) road trip next weekend and now you've really got me in the mood. Thanks!

    Robin Flies South

    1. Robin,

      You're probably on your trip now. I hope it's perfect!

  5. What a fun road trip tablescape! Those dishes are perfect for you.

    1. Hi Martha,

      Mid-Atlantic, you must be near me. I'm in Jersey and lucky enough to be the same distance from NYC as I am Philly. I've taken many trips in to PA to visit some of the places I've seen highlights on America's Castles. Now I'm wondering about finding that county where Bronson Pinchot is redoing old houses.

      Not that you're in PA, but I think of it as the Mid-Atlantic.