For many years after graduation, I always included at least one good cross-country road trip in my summer plans. Sometimes I hitchhiked, sometimes I took an Auto Driveway car, sometimes I took a bus, but it was always terrestrial: I never flew. But I just felt like the world was out there for exploring, and I made sure to include one good long road trip across the country each year…eventually I did about 20 of them.
This one year I was in Maine, and getting ready to head out to Portland Oregon to collect a friend and drive her back to Maine for summer school. My good friend Kevin K (who is mentioned several times in these blogs) offered to give me a ride to somewhere in NY state where he wanted to visit a friend, to get me on my way. So we loaded up his car, and did a short road trip down to his fiend’s place in Ithaca. The next day, he said he might just keep heading west to his old hometown in western PA, and he’d give me a ride that far. So we loaded up and trended out to western PA for a few days. After a couple of days in PA, he decided to head generally westward and we’d see where it went. So off we rolled.
We had a great road trip, with one particularly hilarious incident involving toothpaste that I might tell sometime, and eventually ended up in the mountains of central Colorado. After a few days of fossil and mineral hunting, exploring hot springs and sightseeing, we decided that our paths were taking us in different directions. I had to continue on to Portland to collect my friend (who was on a timetable), and Kevin decided to head to the SW to visit some friends along that way. So on the side of the road in Craig, Colorado, we shook hands, said ‘see ya’ and went in opposite directions.
The roads of time took us in different directions for a bit, and I didn’t see Kevin again for maybe two years. One day, several years later, I heard he was back in Maine so I tracked him down and got caught up. His road trip took him down Albuquerque, across to Flagstaff, then up to Seattle where he spent some time with his Aunt there. I had lived in Seattle for a few years before that with my friends Peter and Julie, playing music with some locals and working at a bagel deli, so I knew the part of town where he had stayed.
He told me that one time he had driven out to Hurricane Ridge, west of Seattle on the Olympic Peninsula, for a nice day hike. I knew Hurricane Ridge…Peter and Julie and I had hiked it before. Kevin told the story about hiking the ridgeline and seeing two guys approaching in the distance. As they got closer, one of them looked a little familiar. When they finally met, Kevin realized that he KNEW one of the guys…it was his college roommate from Penn State, about 20 years earlier!
So Kevin pulls out a photo of these two guys on the top of Hurricane Ridge, and points to one of the guys and says “This is him! This guy was my college roommate!”
And I pointed to the OTHER guy and said “and THAT guy is my friend Pete S, who I played music with when I lived in Seattle with Peter and Julie!”
True. Kevin can verify this story!