This evening, I’m literally riding west into the sunset.
Well, I probably shouldn’t have said “riding” since it really is more like “driving.” I guess we’ve mostly left the world of horse transportation, huh?
I’m beginning the first leg of a 2,400-mile road trip across most of the country from Chicago to Seattle. My new life in the Pacific Northwest is due to a job at Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI), one of my favorite companies. And I’m pumped.
For the first few days, I’ll be making the journey by myself. Even though I had the opportunity to fly instead, I decided that I need the catharsis of a six-day trip. I need the time to slowly close the book on my eight-year stay in southwest Michigan and my four-year stay in northern Indiana. I need to feel as if Seattle is far away—otherwise, a flight just feels like cheating, almost as if I suddenly appeared in my new life with no arduous journey.
After a few days by myself, I’ll be picking up my brother, Kyle, from the Minneapolis airport. From there, we’ll trek across South Dakota to the Badlands, then on to Wall Drug, Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse Memorial, and the mountains of Montana.