Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Road Warrior

I love to drive. There is something so soothing, with the scenery passing by, the white lines moving, racking up those miles. I have an old Volvo, and her name is Ingrid. She is a 1996 with 223,000miles and still going strong. She is a deep forest green with British tan interior and a great stereo system. My plan is to put at least another 100,000 miles on her.

Ingrid is the first automatic transmission that I had driven in years. I learned to drive on an automatic, but after Rick and I got married, there was not much money for a car. I had driven ancient ones, until we finally decided we could afford a Honda Civic.....with no extras. No air conditioner, no auto trans. We went to Jasper to the Honda dealership and there was a little red Civic, with no extras. We signed the papers and Rick left for work. As the salesman was getting everything together for me, keys, etc. I told him I had a couple of questions, so he said sure, ask away. So, I said, let me get this straight, first gear is really slow, the second is a little faster,
then third, and fourth is highway and each time I shift I push the clutch in, right? He looked at me with panic in his eyes, and asked if I was kidding. No, I said, I read about straight shifts, and I am sure I can drive one. He freaked, he kept saying that he would get someone to drive me home. I told him, I had to learn sometime, that I had to get to work and I would be fine. I am sure when I left the car lot that day, he was sweating bullets.

I loved shifting gears, it is such a fun way to drive. After the Civic, I had a Grand Am and then a
Ford Explorer, they were all straight shifts and I loved driving them all! But I kept looking at old Volvos and when a friend of mine wanted to sell Ingrid I jumped at the chance to get her! She would be perfect if she were a straight shift!

My friend Jackie and I go to yoga teacher trainings together all the time. At first, Jackie would always offer to drive or help me with the driving. I finally convinced her that I just love to drive.
It is almost meditative for me. When I am driving, any worries that I have seem to just fade away. Traffic seldom bothers me. I turn on the stereo and just sing.

Once, several years ago, Rick and I and a friend of ours, drove to Norfolk,Va.. We left one afternoon after work. The plan was I would drive and then on down the road they would help.
I drove all night. I woke them when we got to Virginia.

Maybe in a parallel universe I am driving a big rig cross country, or a covered wagon east to west. I just know, I am a road warrior. I love the road, the feel of the steering wheel in my hands, and the passing of towns and road signs. The road offers possibilities, there are turns, and curves,hills and valleys, you can make the choice to turn left or right or stay straight.
The highway takes you to cities and deserts, through the mountains and plains, you are out there, yet isolated with in the confines of your car. It is a modern day marvel, this ability to set out on the open road and go where ever your heart leads.

1 comment:

  1. In my perfect world, I would never have to slide in behind the wheel of a car again! It is nice to know there are people like you who love to drive, that has just never been me. I went kicking and screaming to get my license and have wished for a limo and driver ever since. :)