I remember the weekend I spent driving out West. Packing up my car with all of my possessions, leaving one end of the country and going to the other. I wasn't alone, my best friend brother came along for the adventure. We listened to a lot of music, did a lot of talking, and did a lot of watching the world pass by outside of a car window. Seeing the landscapes of America at 75 miles an hour was beautiful. The wooded hills of the Southeast turned into the flat plains and plateaus of Texas, and finally transformed into the mountains of Arizona and California. I loved New Mexico and hated Oklahoma.
My brother and I drove 2,300 miles in around 32 hours. We took turns driving and sleeping, stopping only for food and gas. We left the Eastern seaboard at 2 in the afternoon Friday, and arrived in the Los Angelas area at about 10 Saturday night. We didn't take enough time to see what was to be seen, but we saw so much. We saw what a Burger King (and the insects that accompanied it) was like in Arkansas. We drove over a bridge at sunset over the widest river in North America. We saw what a road looked like in a straight line and dissapearing with distance. We saw a town asleep at dawn in the desolate dust of Texas. We saw modernized tepees in the Native American plains of New Mexico and Arizona. We saw Jesus walking on the side of the road carrying His book, he had no shoes on, and he was in Alabama.
What sticks out the most in my mind is cresting a mountain in California at night and seeing L.A. The hills were on fire with light, as far as the eye could see the place was lit up. My life in Georgia was always shrouded by pine trees, rising a hundred feet in the air, blocking out the sky, the sun and stars, and everything else. Trees don't exist in Southern California, people need the space for their homes and garages and workplaces and highways. Hills and low mountains aren't even allowed greenery, they build their too, it's a sight that I came to like, it was different, and reminded of stars in the night sky.
Eventhough my brother came with me, he went back to everything I left in Georgia. My best friends, my family, my job, everything I was used to. By the time the tires of my car hit the California state line I missed it all. With time I missed them even more. I went to the Golden State to be with my future wife and son and her family, and to try something new. I loved the beaches and people, but it was too fast for me, and for her it turned out as well. We stayed a year and went back home to Atlanta. Now I miss California.
In several days time my family in Georgia leaves to go live in Arizona. They're going out West and leaving me and my wife and son here. I'll miss them sorely, but this time next year I'll be back in California, where I like it, and my mother and father and brothers will be a short trip away. Things should be alright.