Let’s consider your options: take to the air, hop on a train, set sail, or get on the road. All these will take you places and give you stories but one more than the other focuses on the getting there. The thing about road trips is this: it’s the adventure you have to earn. It takes planning, literal street smarts, an epic play list, and having that one point when you realize that you are actually in the first five minutes of a horror movie. But you will figure it out. It’s called the long and winding road for a reason.
Setting aside all the many ways one can wax philosophical about being on the road, actually getting on there is pretty darn simple. Summer is here have a car, you’re itching to get out of the city and everyone is game.
JUST GO. The hardest part is over once you actually decide to go. Find a couple of days when all the gang’s all free, find a destination-pick a random point on a map if you have to and load your gear.
Get your engine and all your tires checked, and gas up. Figure out how everyone and everything is going to fit. If you’re going to be on the road for a day or more, set up driving shifts.
Leave early. Set a meeting time and stick to it. There is no point starting a road trip pissed odd because someone was 30 minutes late. Set a meeting place where you can grab breakfast, and if possible, at a place where you can buy last minute things you may have forgotten to pack. Once your vehicle is ready and everyone is psyched, you’re pretty much good to go.
GET PACKED. As to what is in your trunk, you can choose to have nothing, but junk food and a change of underwater, or you can pack a change of underwater, or you can pack your entire house(like what most of us do). Pack a few essentials to make those hours in cramped space a little easier.
- Food- Let’s face it, having the munchies on a long stretch of road where the only thing you can eat is grass, or the carabao currently grazing on it? Not something you want to experience. Hydration is the key, don’t forget water, either.
- First Aid Kit- Make sure you pack description medicine and maybe a couple of Bonamine, too. Travel sickness is neither pretty nor fun.
- Playlist and Accouterments- So you’ve spent more time than you probably should have making the most excellent summer playlist. The last thing you want is to find out that the car doesn’t have an iPod jack. Nevertheless, there’s a USB modulator now, where you can connect your USB to your car.
NAVIGATE. There are two schools of thought on figuring out how to get to wherever the heck it is you’re going. You can go old school and stock up on maps. There is nothing quite like marking your route with a pencil. This is an excellent time to unleash your inner hobbit and trace your path from the Shire to Mordor. You can also just use your cellphones.
On whichever camp you land, make sure you pay careful attention to signs, and get ready to roll down your windows to ask for directions. You don’t need mad navigation skills. Be polite, smile, and more often than not, people will be more than happy to point you to the right track.
It’s always a good idea to stop every few hours and stretch your legs so make a few stopovers. You’ll never know what you’ll find on the road, so be willing to stop when you find some place interesting. You might just fall in love with the in between-places as well. Having a plan is good but if you’re lucky and you look a little closer, you’ll find that one place that wasn’t online but ends up being amazingly awesome.