Do you ever feel restless? Like you’re just going to go nuts in the same place doing the same things over and over? This happens to me from time to time, and one of my favorite things to do is take a road trip.
My husband and I used to take these random unplanned drives a lot more before our son was born. Most of the time we’d just pick a direction and try to see how far we could go before we got uncomfortably lost. Being in the southeastern corner of America, we had a lot of options for uncomfortably lost. It was here that I saw legitimate cotton fields for the first time. Not gonna lie, they made me a touch nervous. I can now say I’ve had the privilege of driving down the darkest roads in the world. OK maybe that’s an overstatement, but in Cali there are street lights pretty much everywhere. I did not know one could escape to pioneer days so easily.
The best thing about these meandering journeys is that we end up spending time together with nothing else looming in the background. We make memories and develop inside jokes and just laugh. There’s something absolutely freeing about driving with no destination in mind.
One of our most memorable trips took place about a month and a half before our son was born. If you’ve been pregnant, you probably know how claustrophobic you can start to feel during those last few weeks. I needed to get out of the house, so we drove off one Saturday into a rural area of South Carolina. We drove along for about an hour and a half before I started to get that point of no return feeling. It was November, so the air was cool and crisp and the windows were down, as we looked for a place to turn around. If you’ve ever driven in the little known parts of the southern states, you know that roads are pretty much one lane in each direction, and turning points can be few and far between. We finally saw a turn off with a sign that said Hyatt’s Pond. As we pulled up to the turn off, a small dog came running along side of our minivan. At first it was kind of cute. It was kind of like ToTo from the Wizard of Oz. Then I noticed that no one was around. The owners of the dog were nowhere to be seen. And then out of nowhere 4 or 5 other large dogs appeared. It was like the little dog was the bait to get us on the road and the bigger dogs were the muscle. It was a dog mafia. The little dog ran out into the road forcing us to stop. It just stood there barking with its cohorts coming up on the side of the van. We sat there for a moment hoping someone would come out of the house and call the dogs in. Apparently that wasn’t in the cards. The dogs just stood there barking and getting closer. The little one hopped up and I put the window up. I was starting to get a teensy bit worried. It was like something out of a horror movie. The road was so narrow that we couldn’t just back out. We had to keep creeping slowly forward trying to make sure we didn’t hit that freaking little yappy dog. All I could imagine was accidentally tapping a dog with a bumper and some person immediately appearing with a shot gun. What can I say? I have a fertile imagination. Plus I’m pretty sure someone was in one of those two houses. There were trucks in the driveways. After much trepidation (which I’m sure lasted less than 10 minutes, but seemed like hours) we got past the boundary the dogs felt comfortable with. I guess attack dogs only feel comfortable going a few feet outside of their front yard *shrugs*. We made it to the turn around by what I have to assume was Hyatt’s Pond, and skedaddled with a quickness.
After the tension broke we couldn’t do anything but laugh hysterically. We still joke about that day. We like to think of it as the day we DIDN’T end up on the local news for being eaten by a pack of mafia dogs. So yeah that’s my life on the edge. Some people base jump or cliff dive, I face down maniacal canines with a baby in my belly and a full bladder!
Do you have any rituals to relieve stress? Do you like getting lost? I’ve had my best adventures on roads leading to nowhere!