Blog Master G

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Cross Country: Day 7

Monday, December 29th, 2003 · 1 Comment

Pittsburgh, Penn. — This is it: Our final night on the road. Seven days behind the wheel, traveling across this vast country we call America. What strikes me about this country every time I cross it — be it by air (dozens of times) or by car (now thrice) — is how much of nothing there is. So much brown (this time of year) and so many fields. This is a good thing — to know that not everything is developed (yet). What also strikes me is how similar most places are, with only slight noticeable differences. The people are different, of course, in look, behavior, accents, attitude, political beliefs, but while on the road, we only interact with a small number of folks.

One small difference I’ve noticed between most places we’ve passed through and those in California is the coffee. The coffee is bad, of course, but so, too, are the cups — for the environment. Outside California, all coffee cups are styrofoam; in the Golden State, they’re paper. This is a debatable point: Landfill vs. trees. I think I would fall on the anti-landfill side, though. I love trees and want to conserve them as much as possible, but we can always plant more. Styrofoam does not biodegrade and ends up in a landfill. There is a finite amount of land on this earth. Once we use it up, it is gone.

Here on the eastern side of the finite American land, we spent some time tonight with my grandparents near Pittsburgh. The timing also worked out well such that my uncle Bruce was in town, too. We all had dinner together at my grandparents’ house. It was the first time I’d been to the house in which my Mom grew up, so it was an important visit for a number of reasons. We had a really good time and I’m happy to soon be living just one state away from family, despite moving away from my home state of California. I’m looking forward to spending more time with them.

Bored with the usual routine in our hotel room earlier tonight — check in, walk the dogs, bring in the stuff from the car, set up Happy’s cage, start writing in blog, watch CNN, etc. — we decided to live on the edge. We walked across the street to the Holiday Inn and hung out in the lounge. We had a couple rounds of drinks, played cards, and listened in amusement to the rowdy U.S. Army soldiers at the next table, discussing things such as their time in Iraq, their body weight, and how drunk they were. It was a fun night and a good way to break the travel routine.

Tomorrow we head into our new home state of New York. First stop: A visit with Johnny in Buffalo. Then we’ll cruise east across New York to Kinderhook.

Tags: relocating

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Suzanne // Dec 30, 2003 at 8:41 am

    Gabe and Jen: From Amarillo to aramdillos, grits to Graceland…I’ve thoroughly enjoyed your TravelBlog.

    God Speed!