Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Road trippin'

     I left Killeen, Texas at 5:37 p.m. on Friday, 4 May.   I arrived in Panama City, Florida at 10:37 a.m. 5 May.  Exactly 15 hours after I left.  I stopped three times for short 20 minutes naps.  Twice for gas.  Four times to let the dogs and I go to the bathroom.

     When David made the trip, he used the MapQuest directions.  They took him right into the middle of Houston traffic.

     When I made the trip with my GPS, it directed me into parts of Texas that I'd never seen before.  Some I hope to never see again.  There were fields ... miles and miles of fields of corn.  Then occasionally, there would be a field of rusted farm equipment.  I wondered if the cranky spinster who was telling me where to go was really "telling me where to go."  I imagined I saw the faces of children in the corn and drove faster.

     Out of the corner of my eye, I passed a farm that had heads on stakes in their garden.  Yes.  Heads.  On stakes.  I'm 95% sure that they were fake heads.  But not positive.   I remembered the movie Texas Chainsaw Massacre and wondered if I had somehow offended the cranky spinster who was giving me directions, and decided maybe I should stop referring to her as cranky.  And spinster.  Perhaps she might like the name "Dora" instead.  Or maybe I should change voices and just call him Waldo.

     I saw a lot of cattle.  A LOT of cattle.  Some horses.  But mostly cows.

     This was the last moon I saw in Texas after going through a little town called Kosse, Texas.

     Sometimes after it was dark, I excitedly called my mom.  "I see water!  A lot of water!  I'm on a bridge!  It has to be the Gulf!  I can smell home!"

     But it was only Lake Livingston.  Talk about disappointment.  Not only was it NOT the Gulf of Mexico... I was still in Texas!

     I didn't see the "You Are Now Leaving Texas" sign until almost 10:30 p.m.

     I watched the sun come up over Mississippi.

     While I love my GPS for getting me the most direct route... next time I will try to pay attention to any community events on the way.  There was a Fiesta 10k Run in downtown Pensacola, Florida that put me 30 minutes behind schedule because of traffic delays with the runners on the road.

     It was also Thunder Beach Weekend on Panama City Beach.  A weekend when nearly every single Harley and other motorcycle rider descend on the beach for a weekend of fun in the sun... unless of course you are driving after nearly 15 hours straight.  Not fun.

     But this... this was what made the trip worth while.  My first full moon back in Florida.  Home.  East Bay.


  1. That final shot is just brilliant. The shimmer of the reflected mooonlight and those deep blues....
    Thank you.

  2. It's a beautiful thing!...

    My grandmother and Aunt lived at Gulf Gate on Surf Drive on Panama City beach. I spent quite a few vacations there with them, loved that sugar white sand and emerald water!... I didn't realize you were heading back to PCB!...