February 2016 was a month of near constant movement. I saw 13 states, oddly Arizona 3 times and Illinois twice. I was in a car for 4,712 miles and a plane for 4,362. The trip was part relocation, part great American road trip through iconic places. New York to Denver, across the plains, waiting out a blizzard in Topeka along the way. After, a loop through the desert with mountains, lava fields, forests, the Grand Canyon, Joshua Tree, Palm Springs. I didn't spend more than five consecutive nights in any one bed. Wanderlust.
It's hard to focus on specific things when driving for hours at a time at 75 mph. After some time you become lulled by the road. You catch glimpses of things more often than you get to stop and stare. It sometimes feels like an alternate reality where it's impossible to focus at what's closest and the horizon is clearest. Still, sometimes you stop and the wind stops and for a moment you can feel the vastness of these landscapes.
Just a couple hundred miles and a few days away from nearly 20 years in NYC will remind you that your country still has wide open spaces and stretches of Interstate without cell phone coverage. Food trends have passed unnoticed, kale isn't something you'll find everywhere. Mounds of cheese, cowboy hats, barns, main streets, old neon, odd signs. Americana still exists in 2016. But why still all the styrofoam, America?
Trucks, tits, guns and (G)od. Trucks are omnipresent. As are churches, strip clubs and gun shops. The billboards won't let you forget. Driving westward on I70, the landscape doesn't change much from Pennsylvania until just before Denver. Sometimes it feels like everything you see exists solely for the trucks. Truck wash, T&A, Kum&Go, Trucker's chapel, weigh stations, billboards saying truckers welcome. Many billboards ask if you're ready to meet God. Many billboards also ask if you want to see tits. Or buy guns. Trucks, Tits, Guns & (G)od. America.
If you'd like to see more, here's the trip in chronological order. NY, NJ, PA, WV, OH, IN, IL, MO, KS, CO, NM, AZ, CA, AZ, NM, CO, (IL, NY, AZ, CO)