Traveling is never truly about reaching your destination or about seeing miraculous places and historical monuments. Traveling is about the journey; all of the difficult moments, set backs, and long, uncomfortable bouts of transportation are what make up the real experiences of traveling. Often people look at these experiences as the negative aspects of a trip, but I disagree. All of the difficult parts are the parts you will remember and laugh about many years after. Set backs and difficulties while traveling often present new opportunities that you otherwise wouldn’t have had if everything went according to plan. You also develop fantastic stories that you will inexhaustibly tell for the rest of your life (People love to hear the same travel story 30-40 times before it gets annoying, it’s a fact).
Rin and I traveled thousands of miles by car on our east coast road trip of the US. At one point I did the math and I think total we drove about 37 hours over 15 days, often on very little sleep. There were many times we would get in the car exhausted and worn out, but we were always able to wear an optimistic attitude and to build each other up when we were having an off day. It is so amazing how much control you have over your own happiness; sometimes all it takes is an optimistic outlook and a roll-with-the-punches attitude to have a wonderful time. Traveling with someone who shares this outlook is such a relief and it makes it incredibly difficult to have a bad time.
Rin and I traveled from New York to Richmond to meet up with some of my friends and family for a night before heading to my brothers wedding in Myrtle Beach. It was quite a bit of driving for just two days but it was so worth it for the time we spent in Myrtle Beach. My brother’s wedding was so beautiful, and by some miracle the weather held off so they were able to hold the ceremony outside next to the beach. It was an undeniably beautiful, magical wedding with a really fun reception (Yes, the open bar helped considerably).
After having 4 wonderful days in Myrtle Beach with friends and family (Thanks for letting us crash, Mom! You’re the best!), Rin and I headed back up the coast, stopping in Richmond for a night before heading to DC. We had two sunny, warm days in DC so we were able to walk all around the mall and visit a lot of the Smithsonian museums. Our favorite museum, however, was the Newseum. It was incredibly well done, with exhibits including a portion of the Berlin Wall, a 9/11 exhibit that featured front pages on newspapers from all around the world the day after, an interactive television news studio, and so much more. We could have spent all day in the museum, it was fascinating and well worth the 20 dollar entrance fee.
DC marked the end of the best road trip I have ever been on (It is also the first road trip I’ve ever been on). I hope it’s the first of many more to come with my new partner in crime!
Next stop: Berlin, Germany