Road Trip Notes

My Solar Eclipse road trip route, more or less.

I really didn’t intend to marathon drive, but it was my only choice since I only had two days to make it from LA to Missouri. It wasn’t too bad, really. The fact that it is around 780 miles from here to Albuquerque, NM and another 830 miles to Springfield, MO does sound daunting. But I had rented a 2023 Infiniti Q50, had cruise control on for most of the way, had my tunes on. I never got sleepy or fatigued on this over 4,000-mile road trip. And since I really only ate once a day since I was sitting down most the day, there weren’t a lot of stops that needed to be made: just gas stops (where I also bought water), and pee breaks here and there.

This trip brought me to Missouri and Arkansas for the first time. This leaves Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa as the only states west of the Mississippi River I have yet to travel to.

Here are some thoughts I had while on this trip:

  • New Mexico has awful roads. I-10 was not too bad since there is only like 100 miles of it, but I-40 was fucking horrible. It’s one of the reasons I could not be sleepy since I had to dodge potholes. Although I did have a rental car, I still didn’t want to deal with the hassle of a flat tire in the middle of nowhere.
  • California drivers need to fucking realize that passing lanes are not travel lanes. That left lane is ONLY for passing.
  • Elderly drivers from Kansas and Missouri need to have their driver’s licenses revoked. Going slower than the speed limit is not safe driving you fucking cunts.
  • Camper vans, RVs and other large recreational vehicles need to be off the fucking road. They became problematic when tractor trailers needed to pass them and we were going up a hill.
  • I became even more sure of my atheism. Somewhere around San Antonio, I saw a pickup truck with a decal on its back window with a cross and Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes kneeling and praying towards the cross. Around it was written, “3 Nails + 1 Cross = 4 Given.” This boils down my problems with modern Christianity, that if you believe in Jesus you will go to heaven despite any actions you do on earth. It allows people to ease their consciences, to have no moral consequences for their actions. Sure they might have to suffer punishments for their actions, but because they believe in Jesus all guilt be gone! It has created such a moral bankruptcy and self-entitlement that’s pretty fucking sad.
  • I noticed this the most in the drivers of Texas. Their aggression is very intentional and verging on maniacal. I saw many cars cut over multiple lanes on the interstate to get to “their” spot in the fast lane that they felt is rightfully theirs. Mine mine mine. It was quite appalling and scary to be frank. But whatever. They’re going to heaven, so who cares?
  • While driving out of Texas I realized that since I was on the I-10, I would be passing through Tucson. In Tucson is the only location that Sweet Tomatoes (parent company of the beloved Souplantation) reopened. I was also fortunate that my timing landed me there about 30 minutes before it opened. It was everything I remembered it being: the salad bar, the soups, the breads, the soft serve and toppings. But what was odd was that in line waiting for it to open I saw four people who had amputated legs. I found that to be an abnormally high amount of amputees.
  • I was so happy to return to California. It sounds odd especially for people who live outside the state who sees us as freaks, but once I crossed the Colorado River I exhaled and felt relief. It’s not that I think we are normal, but more so that it’s the sort of abnormality that I’m used to. Like the stupid shit people in Texas do perplexes me, but I understand the reasons for the stupid shit we do here in California. It’s more of a comfort of familiarity rather than anything else.

It’s been a while since I did a long road trip like this, so it was nice to see the states again. Now to go to the final states I have left…