Saturday, November 27, 2010

Musings about long distance driving

We're here, after a thousand miles of highway.  I'm glad we broke it up over three days - I drove it a lot in two days (and once in a single day) when I wore a younger man's shoes.  Probably I could again if I had to, but I'm glad I don't.

But long distance driving gives you time to reflect.  Here are some of those.

Driving is an entirely different experience from flying.  You see things that would be invisible from 30,000 feet, and have the time to ponder them.  You can even stop and look at them if you want.  There's a moral here for coastal elites who consider 80% of the land to be "Fly Over Country".

What is it with Maryland drivers?  Good grief.  The one who left his car at the gas pump after filling up, and then went to shop in the Pilot (two shopping bags), and then put a quart of oil in his engine while the line of folks waiting to gas up - that one gets double plus extra crazy style points.

I'd forgotten how the sun goes down bang in your eyes as you head south into Georgia on I-85.  And while we're talking about it, that highway desperately needs to be widened between the South Carolina border and exit 111.  Worst traffic of the whole trip, and we drove past NYFC and through Maryland.

The North Carolina rest areas on I-95 are the nicest I've seen.

Boy, howdy, gas is cheap in South Carolina.  Like 40 cents cheaper than in Massachusetts.  Wow.

North Carolina in many ways seems to be trying to turn itself into the Massachusetts of Dixie.  While the rest areas are very nice indeed, the rest of the rigmarole is less desirable.  Not the best role model for you, guys.

#1 Son did a man's work driving.  I guess it's hard to see him as a man, rather than a little boy, but this trip sure opened my eyes.  It's too bad that they needed to be opened.

The new Zed Veir looks pretty sweet.  We saw it right as we drove past the BMW plant in SC.  I didn't really consider one when I was shopping for a Mid-Life Crisis car because I needed a back seat to bring the kids.  Pretty pathetic for a Mid-Life Crisis ...


Eagle said...

Look, the "Coastal Elites" are probably the most mentally-encapsulated, least-traveled, and culturally-inexperienced residents of the US.

They wouldn't know a beautiful highway (e.g. Blue Ridge Parkway) if they rode it, and couldn't appreciate the magnificent expanses of Pennsylvania, Virginia, Iowa (et al) from the windows of their range-limited, size-compacted, corn-ethanol fueled sardine cans.

Take it from someone who loves taking his American-made Harley Davidson on some of those long, beautiful rides. Time to think... time to contemplate nature... and time to remember that there are things greater than yourself.

My guess is that it's easier to ignore the truly important things in life from 40,000 feet than it is to drive through some of the small towns in "middle America" and actually SEE the country OUTSIDE of the self-imposed ghetto-like isolation in which the "elites" imprison themselves.

TheUnpaidBill said...

The coastal "elites" are welcome to keep their "eliteness" out of fly-over country. They wouldn't know a good thing if it bit them in the ass, and certainly wouldn't understand the attraction of the wide open plains. :-)

Midwest Chick said...

Lived in NC for a couple of years. The pretentiousness and tax structure of MA and the social backwardness of rural Alabama. Hated NC but loved Tennessee.

Asheville is excepted from the rest of the state of NC.

Six said...

Glad to hear you're there. Now get a new drivers license and head to the shootin' store. it's an eye opening experience.

soulful sepulcher said...

Glad you all made it!! Happy days are ahead!

doubletrouble said...

Good to hear you've landed bud. Now take Six's advice & go test the shootin' politics; it's just like a free state or something.

Anonymous said...

The drive from Philly to Indianapolis was several days of my life very well spent.


Bob said...

Most of NC's woes comes from transplants from NJ, NY, and yes, MA who came down here and started voting for Democrats, with the usual result.

Anonymous said...

My wife and I try to take at least one long drive every year. There really is no better way to reflect.

Newbius said...

I just spent a week going coast-to-coast-to-coast. Virginia to Kalifornia and back. Borepatch is right. There are things to be seen from a car that must be experienced at ground level. I am in awe of Kansas. One whole day spent driving across farmlands that stretch from horizon to horizon in all directions. And the solitude and majesty of eastern

Glad to hear you arrived safely. Drop me a line with contact info...I have something for you. ;)