Dark, cold, and sleepy was the morning of our last day of travel. Without even the dawn’s company, we packed the guitars, my harmonium, snare drums, bags, backpacks, camera, and food into my Momda Odyssey, all before we hit the road at 5:30. My dad and I shared hugs with Alex and Abby, our sublimely gracious hosts, while I became nostalgic for the moment. It’s weird having to continually say goodbye to people (as I’ve had to do leaving Evergreen, then Oregon, and now Colorado), never knowing when or if I’ll see these people again.
The sky was gorgeous as the sun began to show itself. However, clouds were going to be our enemy for most of the day, as we drove in mostly below-freezing temperatures and overcast skies. Which brings us to Kansas.
A lot of people warned me that Kansas was going to be extremely boring. I guess it wasn’t as cool as driving through the mountains in Idaho or Utah, but I didn’t experience nearly the amount of trauma that people forecasted. Perhaps this was because I was extremely focused on not dying – there were over 20 mph winds on this 70mph interstate, so I was constantly steering against them to stay straight. But with a packed minivan and Optimus Prime semis all around, let’s just say I was pretty focused on the road, which made Kansas fly by quickly.
Missouri, however, was dope. There were many snow covered fields, iced over ponds, Civil-War-looking houses (or remnants of houses), and a wonderfully colorful sunset in the rearview. I also didn’t mind the posted “40 minimum” speed (being from Oregon, we hardly ever get to drive fast, with most I-5 speeds being 65…so driving anything over that is a thrill for us).
After a stop in Kansas City and Saint Louis, we finished the final leg through Illinois and Kentucky. Another West Coast thing: it’s weird how close states are in this side of the country. Within hours you can have driven through three different states? Or even more as you get up the East Coast…where as it takes about five hours just to get from Portland to the California border. Wild times, you guys.
That night was filled with so many thanks. Thanks to The President (that’s my minivan’s name), that she lasted the whole way; thanks to my dad for roughing the drive with me; thanks to my friends Whitney and Hannah for allowing us to stay in their basement while we get our feet underneath us; thanks to my friends and family back home praying and encouraging me. Love you all.