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Driving Cross-Country

The mysteries of my own backyard.

I have been to 18 countries in my lifetime, I've lived in four international cities in the past two years, and yet I'd say that I've only familiarized myself with a small handful of states in my home country of the U. S. of A.

For this, my globetrotting friend and I have decided against a backpacking trip in exchange for a driving one.

With my new Garmin and a world of possibility ahead of us, we intend to spend some graduation money on a cross-country road trip: from New York to San Francisco, and back again.

My Open Road

We plan on couchsurfing as well as crashing on our college friends' couches.

Also, I assume an excursion of this magnitude will take a month, maybe longer, and we've already factored in the fact that we must take two different routes to include the South and the North of all that is still (personally) considered to be the vague Midwest.

My inspiration, I'll admit, was not that born from an original idea, however. I attempted to read Doreen Orion's Queen of the Road over my winter vacation.

It is the story of a “princess of the Island of Long” who quite literally takes the ride of her life with her psychiatrist husband and three pets across 47 states.

Queen of the Road

It certainly sounded entertaining, and yet I could not get over the voice.

Doreen is a psychiatrist, like her husband, but unlike his seemingly laid-back and dedicated demeanor, she comes across as the woman she makes herself out to be: pampered, grouchy, and lazy.

Perhaps it is just me, but I found this fact, amongst other blatant complaints about their marvelous adventures, quite honestly, annoying.

Although, to be fair, I do understand how others would find her hilarious.

And, as I got further into Queen of the Road, I too found the odd couple's misadventures and the lessons they learned from them (both practically and philosophically) to be inspirational.

I suppose I should work on having more patience; maybe then, I'd be able to finish possibly the most unique travel memoir I have ever gotten my hands on. 

Until then however, I've decided to put all my free time efforts into planning my own cross-country trip.

You wouldn't happen to have any must-stops in mind, would you?

Planning a trip? Go Backpacking recommends:


Thursday 23rd of September 2010

Did you go hiking in Sedona, Arizona? Kindly share your adventures. I'm looking forward for my trip there.

Danielle E. Alvarez

Sunday 14th of March 2010

Thank you for the wonderful suggestions! I intend it to be yet another life-changing experience :) thanks for the encouragement!

Danielle E. Alvarez

Sunday 14th of March 2010

Thank you for the wonderful suggestions! I intend it to be yet another life-changing experience :) thanks for the encouragement!


Friday 12th of March 2010

Must go to Wall Drug in South Dakota, you'll see signs on the highway. It's on every cross country road trippers itinerary whether you know it or not.

Also the Hiawatha trail in Montana at the Idaho border is amazing. Rent a bike and cruise down old railroad beds, including through tunnels and over very tall train trestle bridges.

I loved my solo cross county road trip, and I really hope you enjoy yours and can encourage more people to get out and see our wonderful USA.

Danielle E. Alvarez

Wednesday 3rd of March 2010

Interesting. I'm not sure if we're going to go that north since I'm originally from lower Westchester and we'll be leaving from there as well but I will keep that in mind. Otherwise, I may make a stop there before I graduate from SU. Thanks!

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