Song of the Open Road

“Afoot and light-hearted, I take to the open road,
Healthy, free, the world before me,
The long brown path before me, leading wherever I choose.

Henceforth I ask not good-fortune—I myself am good fortune;
Henceforth I whimper no more, postpone no more, need nothing,
Strong and content, I travel the open road.”

~Walt Whitman


When I was little, my mom started a tradition of “pick a direction” trips.  We would load the car with lunch or an overnight bag, then decide on a direction and head out.  We always stumbled across amazing treasures… antique car museums, blooming azaleas, rushing rivers, Indian heritage sites and so much more. Those trips expanded my boundaries in ways I can’t explain.  Even though we never traveled beyond the Oklahoma borders, I believe those trips primed me for adventure; turned a page that would come to define me in a way.

For the past several years, I’ve been on some truly amazing adventures, involving art and gatherings of like-minded women and quite a bit of air travel. While those trips have been a balm for my adventurous soul, this year I’m thinking of a solo trip like we used to take with mom…  someplace within a reasonable driving distance (though likely beyond Oklahoma’s borders) that would open new delights and stretch my personal experience, without the filter of any other perspectives (not to mention airports).

One artist I love takes trips like this and her posts are even making me think about camping out at least part of the way.  I know I have some safety measures to work out, but there sure is some romance in the idea.  Then there are the when-to-leave, how-long-to-be-gone, how-far-to-venture and which-direction-to-head questions to consider.  I suppose at this stage of my life I could leave those questions for the road (pick a direction and go confidently), but I fear I’ve become too much of a planner for that.  I need some level of planning in order to retain my sanity, else I’ll never get past my driveway!

What about you – are you a hit the open road kind of soul or do you need an itinerary?  Have you ever solo-camped?  I’d love to hear about that too!!


3 Comments on “Song of the Open Road

  1. I have not solo camped out before but did a GREAT deal of it growing up. Have you thought about a solo trip to a small cabin in Eureka Springs maybe? Just a thought ! Love your post!

  2. I have discovered on my own wonderful journeys that I don’t enjoy traveling solo very much. The sweetest joy for me is taking in something of beauty, breathing deeply to soak it in, and then turning to my fellow traveller, usually someone I love, and saying “Look at that.”, or just sharing a glance of understanding at all that is before us.
    That is my kind of trip !

    I also like to be extremely comfortable when I sleep so camping has to be on the luxurious side for me to get a thrill from it ! 😉

    Here’s to relishing life’s adventures, far off ones, and those close to home.
    Light and love !

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