hedda62: (time travel)
Things that are good about traveling alone:

1. I can stop at every rest stop. (I can pee at every rest stop. I can stretch at every rest stop.)

2. No disagreements over what to listen to, except perhaps with my own conscience. (I didn't do Spanish lessons yet again.) Mostly for me it's music, because it keeps me awake and works out easiest with the intersection of the phone and the brand spankin' new car audio system that I'm still figuring out, though it did keep wanting to switch me to playing all the songs on my phone alphabetically. Finally I let it, since it's amusing to discover (for instance) how many songs that begin with "Don't" are on there. I sing them all out loud.

3. There is actually no requirement to eat three real meals a day. Though I must remember that chocolate-covered coffee beans melt if left in a hot car, even if they provide caffeine with less need to stop at rest stops.

4. Hotel rooms all to myself! Even at the conference, it turned out, since my roommate canceled at the last minute.

5. No need to feel weird about commenting out loud on the scenery or the road signs or other drivers' behavior. I mean, I do this with people in the car too, but perhaps they are silently judging the habit of exclaiming "Cows!" or "Yay, river!"

6. My choice of recreation, sights, and time to get up in the morning.

I'd say there are a few negatives, such as not having someone to look things up on a map while I am driving (like where the hell are the hotels off Illinois toll roads), but I didn't lose myself badly anywhere, had no car trouble, and didn't get sick, so it was all a great success. I was very happy to get home Monday after driving over 2800 miles and being feet-on-the-ground in 13 states (counting my own), 7 of which I'd never been to before. (I only count touching the ground with preference for buying or eating something, or making a bathroom deposit, or otherwise making an impact. I don't count airports or going through on the train - I'd done that through some of these states before - or driving through without stopping. Kansas was only brunch; and Wisconsin was only a convenience store and a rest stop, but I bought beer and snacks at the former and peed at both, so.)

I'm enough of an introvert to really enjoy the time alone, but I couldn't do two weeks of it without significant human interaction - so first I stopped in Kansas City to stay with [livejournal.com profile] penwiper26, which was wonderful (we went to the symphony! we had tacos and local beer and shopped for used books and watched hummingbirds and talked lots, including very usefully about Not Time's Fool, oh it is so good to hang out with beta readers in real space), and then there was the conference (on the Iowa/Nebraska border) and lots of chatting with people like-minded in the sense of loving plants, if not perhaps in all senses. (It is the Midwest; I don't bring up politics.) And I missed my family and my cats, but it was time to be away for a little too.

I have seen All the Corn Ever, which was unexpectedly beautiful, and I am home now. Bracing for floods, since after a couple of months of drought we are having a summer's rain all in one October week. Looks like the hurricane may go out to sea, though - fingers crossed.
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