Saturday, June 18, 2011

All Road Trips Are Not Created Equal


Wow. Life without school is...different. It's good...but then again, school was good, too. I like school. So, yeah, it's nice to be able to just sit down and write a blog when one pops into my head like this. It's nice to be able to make plans with my sisters and whoever else has nothing to do. It's nice to be able to take my new bunny, Winston, into the backyard and just play with him for as long as I want. (His favorite game is Try-To-Poop-And-Or-Pee-On-Johanna-And-See-If-She-Can-Dodge-Fast-Enough). It's nice to go outside and enjoy the weather for as long as it stays nice. It's nice to be able to take a nap in the afternoon, where I dream a crazy dream about being late for Algebra class and somehow ending up in the boys locker room? (Cause apparently, college students still have locker rooms).

It's also nice to be able to pick up and take a long road trip through Iowa, for reasons I will disclose in a moment.

The point is, life without school is nice. Very nice. However, when I was in school I felt really, extremely productive. Now, not so much. And like I said earlier, I don't mind school, most of the time. It's fun to work towards something, and feel like you're doing something worthwhile. So while it's nice and relaxing and freeing to be able to enjoy the days the way I want to, I don't think I'll mourn the arrival of the summer quarter.

Anyway, about this road trip.

It all started with a cow. A baby cow. So, a calf, I guess. It all started with a calf. A calf that my dad bought for...reasons other than domestication. In fact, I don't even know what the cow looked like. It's probably just as well.

Our relatives in Iowa raised this calf for us, and when it got big enough, cow became beef. And so, 500-ish pounds of beef merited a trip to Iowa for my brother and I. We left Lincoln in the Crown Vic, smothered in empty coolers soon to be filled with hamburger, steaks, and roasts.

It was a fun trip. Our conversation consisted of about 55% quotes, 40% arguing about directions and wondering if we were going the right way, 25% arguing about what music to listen to, 8% arguing about who should drive, 2% me randomly shrieking that I wanted my bunny, 80% me shrieking about how beautiful everything was, 35% both of us angrily venting about construction, and 11% Josh complaining about how many Casey's gas stations there were.

I just read that and realized that it sounds like we just argued and complained the whole way. Realize that when Josh and I argue and complain to each other, 90% of it is in jest. We say things like, "I can't believe this, this is SO STUPID!" and before we've even finished the sentence we're laughing. We argue and complain happily.

Anyway, we somehow navigated through some very primitive construction sites, which seemed like it was NOT a place we were supposed to be, and eventually found the right road, after a slightly frantic/panicked/hysterical distress call to my father, who was able to swiftly put my fears to rest. Thanks for that, by the way, Dad.

Now, before we even began this trip, my parents sat me down and explained to me that on this trip, we would be traveling by highway, not interstate. I was like, yeah, whatever, as long as it's paved I don't care. I discovered, though, that highways are one-lane, not two or more, like interstates. At first I didn't like it. It was hard to pass the slowpokes, especially considering the terrain was nothing but hills.

But not long into the trip, I realized that there were several positive things about highway driving. And then I began to weigh the results in my mind, trying to decide which was better. I've now reached a decision, which I am going to share with oh-so-lucky you!

*Ahem* Highway VS. Interstate Driving

Pros Of Interstate Driving
1) You can pass whenever you want, provided there aren't two IDIOTS driving slowly, side by side.
2) The speed limit is much faster.
3) More gas stations and cities.
4) Interstates don't go through towns, where the speed limit is 25 and you have to stop at stoplights.

Cons Of Interstate Driving:
1) Basically no scenery.
2) Lots of cops.
3) Lots of traffic.
4) Lots of stupid drivers.

Pros Of Highway Driving:
1) LOTS of pretty scenery.
2) Basically NO cops! (It was sweet! Uh, not that I, you know, speed...)
3) Hardly any traffic. Maybe most people take interstates?
4) More fun, and more relaxing, than interstate driving.

Cons Of Highway Driving:
1) Can't really pass people.
2) Speed limit is only 55.
3) You gotta get gas at whatever gas station you come to, cause you never know when you'll see another one.
4) Highways go through towns and become riddled with stoplights until you get out of town. Annoying.

Now, a person might read those lists and say, "Well, there are the same number of pros and cons in each category (a convenient accident), so that means both are equal." But that person would be stupid. That's like saying, "Paper cuts are bad. Having the earth open beneath you and falling into a river of molten lava and getting burned alive is also bad. Since they're both bad, they're both equal." Very stupid.

True, there are the same number of pros and cons, but when I weigh what I like to have in a road trip, it's easy to make a decision and name the victor. When I take a car trip, I like scenery. I like beautiful things. My heart likes to be happy, and pretty scenery does just that.

I could say more things about the other things on those lists if I wanted. I could say that the point of a car trip is the traveling, not the destination, so it's okay if the speed limit is slower, prolonging the trip. I could say driving slowly through little towns and stopping at stoplights is worth it, because you get to see quaint little towns that you never knew existed before. I could say a lot of things, but I won't. Even though I just did.

The point is, as long as there is beautiful scenery, that's enough to make me name highway driving superior to it's interstate counterpart. Yeah, there might be some pretty scenery to be seen from the interstate, too, but I'm confident that there is much more to be seen from the highway.

And there you have it. Interstate is inferior, highway wins. NEXT CASE!

*bangs gavel*

"Plant life" --Owl City (A-ma-zing!)