Tuesday, June 14, 2016

The Road Home...by Angie Terry

           I love road trips.  I plan at least once a year to take the road home. I usually can’t sleep well the night before because of the anticipation. I spend hours dreaming of the hot sun on my skin as I drive, the wide variety of music I have playing through my car stereo and no matter how warm the temperature outside, the feeling of the wind through my hair as I drive with my windows down. It is my own personal concert and I love the warmth and sweat from the sun. Recently, the day arrived for me to do my famous, and highly anticipated road trip home.  To my dismay, it was cloudy with chance of rain.  Needless to say, there went my dreamy, sunny drive!  I consoled myself with the thought that I still had my music!  I excitedly packed my car, started the engine, turned on my music, took a deep breath while putting my car in drive and waved goodbye to my darling house as I  began my road trip home.

           To say I love music and its ability to entertain me for days, is an understatement. Let me further explain. I love listening to Pandora in my car.   I also have the ability to plug in a USB connection and with a thumb drive of 16 gigabytes, I can drive and drive and listen to A LOT of my favorite songs!  After driving a couple of hours enjoying my favorite songs and Pandora station, I stopped for a bathroom break and, much to my surprise, when I came back out to my car all my apps had froze and I could not access any of my USB or Pandora.  To make things worse the radio was stuck on a fuzzy country sounding station and the volume was stuck on level too loud for my enjoyment!  After much frustration, I turned off the music and focused on the 8 hours of driving I still had to get to my father’s house. The harsh reality hit me that my idea of my road trip had drastically changed. I started down the highway with cloudy skies, no music, with windows rolled up tight the only sound being the tires on pavement.  As I drove those many hours, enjoying the beautiful scenery, I had the GREAT blessing of reliving my childhood in my mind.  I thought of all my loved ones, those here and those who have passed on and the tears flowed as I drove over the border of Idaho, my home!  For the first time in my life I really saw the beauty of the irrigation sprinklers on the potato fields and realized what a gift it was that the focus of my surroundings and the memory of loved ones was able to dominant my road trip home!  I rolled my down my window to hear the sound of the sprinklers  and took in the familiar smell of clay-based soil freshly moistened.  The overwhelming nostalgia of sight and smell made me contemplate how much I miss those Idaho sprinklers.

           My Road Trip home was successful!  I did visit most of my family and many loved ones who have been laid to rest in Idaho. I also attended a high school graduation for my nephew, Jordan (of whom I am so proud) and was able to hear him sing with the Bonnevaire’s Choir (my high school choir) at his graduation. Such a wonderful, beautiful time for me!  This vacation proved to be a much needed re-visitation of home, family and memories.  On my return trip, as I crossed the border from Idaho to Oregon, my car’s technology center miraculously began working again!  My apps, my music completely restored and with a newly announced heat advisory…I cranked my stereo, rolled down my windows and reflected on the importance of my quiet road trip home.  I was so thankful for the time I had in my mind, in my quiet car with the clouds!  I continued on the road back to Washington, windows rolled down, enjoying my music with the sun on my face sending warmth and light to my body and soul.  The BEST. Road. Trip. Ever!