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Are we merely in love with the romantic idea of a road trip?
Miles of Delusion

             They have written songs about it, published books on it, and have made countless films about it, and it’s something we have all thought about. Now before your corrupt minds go into a sinful place, I am not speaking about that, I am talking about road trips.  Everyone loves a good road trip whether it is with friends, family or a random hitchhiker that your gut feeling told you seemed like an ok guy, even though he was holding a sign that read, “Nid 2 reach point B”. When a group of guys get together to enjoy the company of Mr. Daniels and Mr. Weiser, at some point during the night 3 topics will come up: Who’s hotter *insert female celebrity names , opening up a bar together, and taking a random road trip to a specific location (usually Las Vegas). With girls it usually comes up when one of them is going through a rough patch in their life and they all feel they just need to get away from it all. But whatever the reason may be for taking a road trip, the idea is always fantastic, and why shouldn’t it be. A road trip is taking: your favorite people, your favorite music, your favorite gas station snack foods, and in some cases, your favorite car and hitting the open road with no troubles except for how far the next bathroom is. But I wonder, are we really in love with road trips? Or are we merely in love with the romantic idea of a road trip?

                One of my favorite stand up comedians, Lewis Black, once mentioned that the moment of anticipation is always more exciting than that actual moment, because anticipation is fantasy and reality can never live up to a fantasy. If you gamble, the most exciting moment is the second before you find out if you win or lose, because you get the adrenaline filled rush that hooks you into making another bet whether you win a jackpot or lose a montage payment. I feel that it is the same situation when it comes to the idea of a road trip. Now this does not apply to short road trips less than two hours or 200 miles, I’m talking about long hauls that make you say, “Wouldn’t it be easier to fly?” , road trips. Naturally there will be some of you out there who do not agree with what I have to say next, which is fine, this is just one man’s humble opinion.

                The moments of planning and anticipating of a road trip are the best, getting the destination planned out, car serviced and ready, luggage packed, and departure time set. Then the moment you and your travel party set off, you start the carefully prepared music playlist you made specify for this trip filled with the classic road trip songs from Lynyrd Skynyrd, Boston, Tom Petty, AC/DC, and more. You have your small stock pile of beef jerky, sun flower seeds, Mountain Dew, and Lays potato chips at your side for your munching pleasure as the miles roll by and you just left your hometown city limits…the road trip has officially begun, and now fantasy takes a backseat for reality to get behind the wheel.

                Somewhere between the first bathroom stop and the four hour, that amazing playlist you created has ended and is about to start again for the second time. That stock pile of snacks has been reduced to a wrapper graveyard on the floorboards of your car and your travel buddies are starting to get restless from being cooped up in a car for over four hours. The road itself has turned dull as you leave any nearby civilization for rural landscape with nothing but an arrow straight highway ahead of you. Like a marathon runner, you have hit a wall. The wall can appear in different forms like: Getting stopped by police, car trouble, car accident, or even a car sick travel buddy.

                Now, I understand and know the joys of having a road trip, and I am not saying road trips are bad. This article was merely to point out that on a road trip, not every single mile you pass will be memorable or exciting. The best road trips are the ones that do not go according to schedule or plan, because then it turns from getting to point A to point B into an adventure. Driving from Texas to Las Vegas wouldn’t be a story worth telling if all you did was drive and arrived on time, you gotta have a flat tire, rain storm, tourist trap, or something added into the trip to make it an official road trip. Ever since President Eisenhower signed the bill to construct America’s Interstates and highway we have become obsessed with driving all over them and seeing what our country has to offer. So the next road trip you and friends or family plan, follow the rule of, “We’ll get there when we get there” and not, “Are we there yet?” 

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