I felt so good like anything was possible.
— Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, “Running Down a Dream”
I am the only person in my family who likes car rides. I love to go for a drive through the mountains on the weekend, or toodle around to nearby little towns. And unlike my husband and our kids, I like road trips. Our children get bored, of course, just like I did when I was their age. They just want to get to where we’re going.
But I like the going. I like looking out the window, watching the landscape roll by: a sign of being on the move, of seeing someplace different from our everyday ordinary life. The highway and the passing scenery are a reminder that the world is big and interesting and beautiful.
What makes a road trip even better is good driving music. One of my favorite musicians for driving, especially in spring, is Tom Petty. There’s something free about his music. It makes me feel alive, and it pairs well with watching the landscape roll by through a car window.
It was a beautiful day, the sun beat down
I had the radio on, I was drivin’
On our way to Baltimore, we drove through forests edged with redbud trees that bloomed magenta, farmlands filled with white-blossomed pear trees, passed red barns on green hills in sunlight, saw the first signs of spring green leaves on mountainsides. In the background was Tom Petty, the soundtrack to our drive through the flowering Appalachians.
I had my feet on the dashboard and my eyes on the moving American landscape, and I was happy.
For the month of April, I will publish a 10-minute free write each day, initiated by a prompt from my prompt box. Minimal editing. No story. Just thoughts spilling onto the page. Trying to get back into the writing habit.