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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Ode to the Roadtrip

This weekend DJ and I are road tripping around the state. I’m nerding out and working on a project for the Montana historical Society on the Mullan Road, which necessitates a trip to Fort Benton. So Thursday night we are high tailing it to Lewistown, where we will camp for the night. Friday morning we will check out L-town and then drive up to Fort Benton to go through their museums and do super-cool archives research. Really, please try to reign in your jealousy. (Despite the fact that I am, in fact, REALLY excited about this!). Saturday we will drive back down towards Helena and maybe camp out in Phillipsburg. What do you think our chances of getting a camping spot on a Saturday night that is the 4th of July are?

Although DJ might think otherwise, I’m a pretty good road tripper. When my family lived in Eastern Washington we’d take a road trip a year to go somewhere like Victoria, BC, Yellowstone, or Portland. Once we moved to Montana, the relatives still in E WA meant repeated trips over I-90 to my grandparents lake place on Coeur d’Alene, to Colton, or to the general Spokane area. And once my parents bought their lake place in Harrison, on Lake Cd’A, well, I bet at one point I was crossing Lookout Pass no less than eight times a year.

Since DJ and I started dating, we’ve had a number of road trips. The first big one was the drive to southern Utah to go hiking. That was 25 hours of car time just to get there and back, and doesn’t include driving around in the parks and between destinations.

Last summer I dragged DJ out to Harrison at least three times before the 4th of July. In August we drove out to his home town of Castle Rock, WA, and then to Long Beach where his mom has a great condo on the Pacific Ocean. While there we ran up I-5 to go visit his grandmother too.

We drove the eight hours to Colton for Thanksgiving. Then over Christmas we drove between snowstorms to Colton, then to Castle Rock, then back through Spokane to Bozeman. The roads were as bad as I’ve ever seen them and the prospect of driving on snowy roads for the next four months prompted DJ and I to bite the bullet on a trip to Hawaii in February.

Our Hawaii trip was to the Big Island, which required about 10 hours of travel time to get to. Of course, we rented a car (Chrysler Seabring. If you want to know why Chrysler is going under, rent one of those Pieces of SHIT!), and drove. A lot. To the point that I had a minor freak out on day five. We’d been in Hawaii five days and I’d yet to lay on the beach for more than one hour. We’d seen a lot, but I had no tan. I was annoyed with travelling really really really far and then not really getting to enjoy a place. DJ handled it with as much grace as an American man, who LOVES to drive, could. I think I got two hours of beach time the next day….
I think what I’m getting at here is that sometimes the driving IS the trip, like this weekend, when we will both see and go places we’ve never been. But other times, like when driving the five and a half hours to the lake, the driving is something you have to slog through in order to get to a place.

Anyone else roadtripping this weekend?

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