Without a doubt, it is quicker and easier to fly to cross-country destinations. But there is something to be said for road trips. We all need to take one every once in a while, just for the sake of experiencing life on the highways and byways of this vast country of ours. And when I say road trip, I mean a real road trip, one that spans several states and takes more than two days.
I have to be honest and say I was not looking forward to the 1700 mile trip to southern Illinois to take Tj to college. Who looks forward to 2 1/2 straight days sitting in a car? I definitely do not put it on my list of favorite things to do, but you know what? I would do it again. Why?
I was once again amazed at the vast empty lands that still cover much of our country. Miles and miles and miles of nothingness. Who owns it all? What kind of animals roam the lands? How can this earth be plagued with overcrowdedness when there is still so much emptiness to fill?
I was entertained by the variety of cultures I witnessed even within our own country. In Missouri, a friendly Steak ‘n Shake waitress with a southern twang served us a mean sweet tea. One state later, in the the KFC/Taco Bell food stop we saw two old farmers in overalls looking like they were fresh from the corn fields of southern Illinois. We heard Spanish being spoken, East Indian accents, southern drawls–only a brief glimpse of the variety America offers.
I enjoyed God’s creation in new ways. As we drove through Kansas late on the second night, we witnessed in the distant sky the most amazing lightening storm I have ever seen. It was constant, lighting up the entire sky behind clouds. Awesome and beautiful.
Outside our hotel window, next to the southern Illinois corn fields, a herd of buffalo grazed in a hayfield. Did you know their tails are constantly swishing?
Jagged mountains, flat praires that never seem to end and every now and then a city would pop up, full of activity and life and people rushing.
I was forced to be still. God and I had a lot of conversations in the back seat. My two men are not always real talkative, so I had many miles to myself. He didn’t say anything really profound during the trip, I just felt his company and enjoyed my chats with Him.
Still, I was glad when we finally arrived in Greenville, Illinois, a small town of 7,000 located 45 minutes from the busy-ness of St. Louis. I had quite enough of watching over 1700 miles tick by. But grateful for the 2 1/2 day respite from everyday life, a change of pace that also reminded me of the grandness of our land.