Recently I ran into a bit of a scheduling snafu.
The prospects? A business trip in Southern California until Wednesday, followed by a wedding in Phoenix on Sunday. What to do? Fly all the way back home to Philadelphia on Wednesday night, spend a few nights in Philly and then spring for another plane ticket out to Arizona on Saturday? “That seems tiring,” I thought to myself. And then a little seedling of an idea planted itself in my mind. The American West. A few days to myself. A road trip.
As soon as I thought it, my heart started racing. I Google-Mapped the route from LAX to Phoenix and dropped the little Street-View man right in the middle. Nothing but straight road through desert. All of the romance of a solo trip slammed down on me at once. I envisioned myself in a car. Blasting tunes. Stopping at diners. Meeting fellow roadies. Staring into the wide open nothing of the Grand Canyon before cruising on up to my friend’s wedding, trailing dust. I would emerge on the other side of this great adventure knowing the secret to the meaning to all of life. Surely spending three days alone, just me and the West, would amplify my confidence in showing up to this wedding alone, at least.
I had dreamt up the perfect plan.
Until a few days later I started to panic. Three days alone? In the desert? My confidence shaky, I started to look for hotels. And my car rental. The costs started adding up and the burden of my loneliness felt like a lead jacket.
My problem is that I am my own worst enemy. Too much time alone, and I turn on myself. Question myself. Blame myself.
I leave on Sunday. I still don’t know where I’m going to go, or how I’m going to pass the time once my work obligations in Anaheim are over. I can only say that it will just be me and the road.