Do western people think of the east and say,
Wow, the mountains through Pennsylvania and West Virginia sound beautiful! I wish I could travel out that way to see it!
Do they wonder about Vermont and a cape on Massachusetts? Do they wonder what the swampy south looks like and if people really, really talk that way?
I am constantly somewhere else. I always wonder what it looks like in Idaho or Iowa, Montana, Arizona, Oregon, South Dakota. And some days, it’s such a powerful yearning, I run off to some ticket agent in search of some deal, in search for someone to say
Michele, I’ll send you to Boise for only 150.00! This weekend!
I saw the desert a few years back. I drove a convertible right through the lowest part of land I had never imagined. I thought about it being at the bottom of the sea. When I drove by a small convenient store, I wondered,
How much money can they possibly make there? Who shops there? Who lives here? What is this place? Holy shit! There’s a ram. We have deer and beavers, they have rams.
There are two parts to this. Part one: I want to see America. I want to see it so badly, some days sitting in an office, beneath recycled air-conditioning makes me want to Gumprun till even this gal’s face grows a beard. I want to not wonder what it’s like to see the earth curve against something green and wavy. I want to touch a cacti. I want to see Crater Lake, the Badlands, Death Valley, and those amazing rivers Brad Pitt pretend fly-fished on in Montana. I must do this. See these things.
Part two: What is it the west wonders about here, in the east? Really? What do we have that you long to see? (I’ll trade you). New York City? You could go to Vegas, they rebuilt it somewhat, and the gum is fake there and the booze is free—a word foreign to New York. Is it New Orleans? Is it Miami? Is it here? What does the east have?
I wander west every day. I think
How can I get a hold of a car for two weeks in order to travel out there? How can I do this for myself? It can’t be that hard, right? Me. Due west. Please.
Some days are worse than others. When there’s a turn in the weather, I’m so antsy it’s impossible to focus. (I need to figure this out).