There is an episode of “This American Life” about road trips. Ira Glass started the show with a story about a man who took a road trip across the country after his mother passed away to find the meaning his life had now. But that big moment, that realization, never came. And that’s the falsity of traveling, but we never lose faith in road trips, Ira sums up at the end of the introduction.
“You still, we all still, buy into the cliché about road trips. That what a road trip stands for is hope. Hope that somewhere, anywhere, is better than here. That somewhere on the road I will turn into the person that I want to be. I will turn into the person I believe I could be, that I am.”
My friend Lucy and I are driving down to Austin, Texas for SXSW. It will be a long drive, but I will be with a dear friend and feeding on the anticipation of seeing Peace Corps friends and good music.
There is a lot of self discovering that I would like to come out of this trip. I would like to arrive back in South Dakota with a clearer understanding of what direction my life should go in next, but that’s unrealstic. I want to put hope into this journey, hope that somewhere on the road I will have this great realization about life, but that is unlifely. What I can count on is good friends and good music, and really, that’s all I need.