For four years, I traveled between Indiana and Nebraska to attend college. I went back and forth at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and summer breaks, with an occasional trip back in the spring. That is many miles and many hours spent on I-80.
But this time in my life is when I really began to enjoy driving. Even as a dreaded the 5 hour trek across Iowa, it was also an easy, flat drive, with little traffic. It was peaceful. I could play music or sit in silence. I got to drive across the Mississippi and see lots of corn and soy and as I crept closer to Indiana, trees began to pop up in my view line.
I moved to Michigan after college, and besides being confused by and then growing to love the way they “turn right to turn left”, I still enjoyed the scenery and open road.
And then I moved to the one of the busiest commuter/traffic areas of the country. The Baltimore/DC metro area.
In my three years here, I’ve seen more than my share of hectic and angry driving. I would be rich if I got paid for every time I was cut off. More than once I have seen someone reverse on the interstate ramp to try and get back on the highway. Many a times, I have seen people driving without their headlights in the pouring rain. I talk to people from other parts of the country all the time, and they say, “Oh we have that, too.” (I only believe Californians and New Yorkers). And yes, every place has drivers that shouldn’t be driving, but we definitely have an influx here.
The strange thing is that this area is all full of transports from other parts of the country, so it’s as if all the bad drivers have united to ruin my driving experience.
I got anxious just writing that portion, so you can imagine how I have felt on the road. Everyone has some place to be and it’s such a hurried atmosphere. I’ve got sucked in a few times, but it’s time for me to slow down and enjoy the drive.
It’s time for me to remember the days of I-80 with fondness (and forget I was ever bored).
It’s time for me to enjoy the beauty of a fall day as I drive to work.
It’s time for me to remember that no appointment or task is important enough for me to rush and speed down the highway in an anxious fit.
It’s time to enjoy the drive.