Three days into our epic road journey (more about the trip here) of unknown destination and duration, and I have picked up three key principles of trailering around the country. Here they are, in no particular order:
1) Everything costs more than the estimates.
We are attempting to drive, feed, lodge, and entertain this family of three on $100 a day or less. Unless we travel two miles, eat peanut butter crackers, park overnight at a Walmart, and count blades of grass, it looks like most days will land more in the $110 to $120 range.
2) Simplicity sounds nice, but materialism is difficult to escape.
A tape measure. A door latch. A pad and colored pencils. A utility knife. All items I have acquired in the past 24 hours, all of which I deemed necessities at the point of purchase.
I brought my family on this trip to leave behind the exhausting pace of Atlanta life, to spend time together, to be in the present moment. But my mind constantly spins with the errands of the day, the repair list, the cleaning, and the groceries. Hopefully a routine will develop soon, creating space in our lives for a simpler way, but it hasn’t happened yet.
3) It is far better to be stuck in traffic than the cause of it.
Gales of wind whipped the Element / Shasta combo and buckets of rain whitewashed the view ahead. We barreled up and over the Horace Wilkinson bridge in Baton Rouge, knuckling the wheel and clenching my teeth as I drove the people I love most through one of the most harrowing driving circumstances I have ever faced.
A handful of miles down the road, we were idling on the highway, unsure of why. Instead of groaning my way through the snarl of vehicles, I recognized that I might as well have been the one with the overturned vehicle. And I was content to perch on my little piece of I-10, so thankful to be delayed instead of hospitalized.
Tonight we are camped in the thick of Cajun country in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, and we are looking forward to great food and music tomorrow, after my first day of mobile work wraps up. Thanks for following along, and stay tuned.