At the age of four I had my initial encounter with a cross-country road trip. It was at this time that my dad had recently received orders to be stationed to Sheppard Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, Texas. We had lived in Illinois since the time I was born and the midwest was all that I knew at such a young age.
Before I knew it, my parents had packed all of our belongings in one single U-haul truck and embarked on a cross country drive with me and my younger sister Michelle. At four years old I felt alive, so carefree, and so untouchable during the drive. I remember alternating cars, switching between riding with my dad in the U-Haul truck and then with my mom in our car that drove closely behind. From the U-Haul, I spoke with Michelle and my mom via walkie talkies and remember telling my little sister that moving to Texas would enable us to be cowgirls, ride horses, and live on a farm. I was naïve and so impressionable as I left behind Illinois at the thought of my family’s new adventure in what I envisioned would be representative of a western film.
The cowgirl daydreams soon subsided as I quickly realized that Texas was indeed suburbanized. To my dismay it was not quite the rural western landscape I had epitomized in my head or the Laura Ingalls lifestyle I was imagining.
However, one thing was forever engrained in my heart: Wanderlust- a strong desire to travel. A longing to explore, to see new places with my own eyes, to challenge the visions that are formed in my mind and see things for what they are, in person, with a desire to learn and discover.
Over the years, I have cherished the memories formed on road trips. The conversations that occur over a long stretch of pavement in the country. The laughter from singing freely with friends as the fresh air pours through car windows. Road trips have a special ability to make one feel alive again and awaken our senses in ways that are difficult to articulate through words. It's a feeling- a feeling deep within that can't be described without slightly taking away from the experience that was felt.
This summer, I encourage you to explore, pour your spirit, soul, and love into adventuring out and seeing this great world with your own eyes.
With that being said, a few things to consider and do before setting out on your adventure (to ensure your trip is as wonderful as possible) include:
1. Car check-up
To reduce the possibility of any car-related issues delaying or bringing your trip to a halt, I encourage you to either bring your car in for a tune up at a local express shop or self check the following prior to embarking on your journey:
Tire overall condition
Window washing fluid
Windshield wiper condition
Filling up with a full tank of gas
2. Prepare your wallet
Ensure you have cash on hand (this will simplify going through tolls)
Inform your bank or credit card company that you will be going out of town to ensure that your card will work in other locations.
Ensure you have your insurance card and driver's license
3. Pack an emergency kit
Having items such as a flashlight, water, snacks, jumper cables, car charger, and some blankets is always a good idea just in case!
4. Create road trip playlists
Music and road trips go together oh so well. Depending on how long you are going to be on the road, having multiple playlists readily available (saved to your phone or on CD in case you go through remote locations without reception) can add a certain level of perfection and fun to your travels!
5. Enjoy the experience with a mindset of flexibility
Sometimes, the journey or trips that don't quite go as planned result in the best memories. I encourage you to relax and enjoy your travels and don't be afraid to change plans if needed. If you are tired, stop to rest etc. The most important thing is to cherish the memories and experience as a whole!
*please note: Although I have taken multiple road trips and moved cross-country on more than one occasion, I am not a car mechanic. Any views expressed on this website should not be considered professional advice. The goal of glowiwthmeraki.com is to motivate others to live a healthier, fuller life. Glowwithmeraki cannot be held liable for any reliance upon this advice.
From the Author
Well hello there! It is with a grateful and full heart that I welcome you to glowwithmeraki.com. On this site you will find healthy recipes, ideas, and inspiration, all created with the Meraki philosophy of leaving a piece of yourself (your soul, creativity, or love) in all you do. I truly hope that you will find inspiration from this site and stay awhile!