Saturday night we drove to North Carolina to spend Thanksgiving with Maile’s family. The sun was setting and the kids were watching a movie on my computer and the miles just kept sliding behind us. We passed a truck stop on Route 81 north of Winchester.
“Do you remember that?” I asked Maile.
At first she didn’t know what I was talking about.
“That’s the first place we stopped to fill up the bus with gas on our trip,” I said, watching the exit sign recede in the rear view.
“Nine months ago,” Maile said. “Do you remember how anxious we were about it?”
And so much happened in the few months after that. Nine thousand miles worth of stuff. The craziest part is that when we stopped there, we didn’t have any idea what we were in for. We had no idea what the next four months would bring our way. We couldn’t have imagined the bus overheating in Nevada or losing our brakes on the Teton Pass or not having any power the first night in Yellowstone.
It was the adventure of a lifetime, and in some ways it all kind of started right there in that truck stop on Route 81. Just north of Winchester.
And it got me thinking about how life is like that, how we do the best with what we have in that moment. How we’re so uncertain at times. How difficult beginnings can be. The importance of community. The necessity of adventure.
* * * * *
On December 10th the book that Maile and I have written about our trip will be ready for release in paperback and digital formats. We’ve titled it, How to Use a Runaway Truck Ramp. In it we share many of the best stories from our trip, but it also serves as a kind of follow up to my earlier book, Building a Life Out of Words.
If you are a blogger and would like to review How to Use a Runaway Truck Ramp at your blog during the week of December 10th, I’d love to send you a free, advance PDF copy. Just shoot me an email.
Finally, if you’d like to be kept in the loop about the book’s release, as well as receive notification of some giveaways I’ll be doing along with the book, sign up for my email newsletter (in the left sidebar).