March 2018, the day after I bought this vehicle.
I apologize for posting a winter photo during summer season.
Yesterday, I drove west through Banff National Park and arrived at my destination, 8 hours later.
Google Maps says it’s a 6-hour drive but I am never in a hurry.
It’s a legit use of the word literally when I say it’s literally all about the journey, not the destination.
(For all you Parks and Rec fans, Rob Lowe saying literally, is Literally. The. Best. Thing. Ever.)
Said journey begins when I decide I’m going to take a road trip. I choose my destination, secure my accommodations and begin my lists.
Lists for clothing I will want to wear. Each outfit has to coordinate with my mood. If I’m happy, I wear a dress. If I’m annoyed, I wear a dress. If I’m feeling sexy, I wear a dress.
You would think I’d have an aversion to dresses as I was forced to wear a dress every day of my childhood until 3rd grade when I told my mom I was doing high jump in gym class and kids were laughing at me for flashing my underwear.
But now, I find them the most flattering and comfortable for me.
This is where I'm supposed to insert a photo of me wearing a dress but I dislike photos of myself, I don’t feel like my looks translate well to photos. And I’m vain. So don’t take photos of me, please.
My lists also include one for food, usually, I stay in vacation rentals or on property where I have my own kitchen to cook in.
Electronics list, hair and makeup list, journals and books and pens list.
And a miscellaneous list.
Then I pack about HALF.
The night before I leave is usually a restless one. I stay up late, trying to pack, because dammit, I’m going to leave at 6 in the morning.
So I putter around, doing things that have nothing to do with packing.
My vehicle has to be detailed before I go. It’s vacuumed out, the leather is dusted, panels polished, bugs from last road trip removed, gas tank filled.
Eventually, I fall asleep.
6AM rolls around. LeNora doesn’t move.
Eyelids flutter open.
9AM, car is packed, time to shower.
10AM. Ok now I’m pulling out of the garage after I’ve triple checked that my plants are fed, all the lights are off, windows and doors closed and locked, alarm is on.
No room for passengers. Sorry, not sorry.
This time, I grabbed a coffee and a smoothie before I left the city. I rarely eat in the car..new vehicle and crumbs...no thank you.
My previous vehicle was a 2010 Mazda3 GT, a fun, zippy car with a 2.5-litre engine. It was a joy to drive along the winding mountain roads in the sunny summertime but absolutely useless in a winter like we had this year.
I’m no mechanic but I know how to check the fluids, fuses, and I know the engine size and what kind of oil it needs.
My dad made sure I knew enough about vehicles but he told me “let the men in your life inspect your car for you, it makes them feel important.”
So, every 8000 km, I show up at my dad’s house and make him change the oil. Which, based on my love for road trips, is every 3 weeks.
Like I mentioned earlier, it’s not the destination, it’s the drive itself.
It starts with the vehicle. I didn’t want to spend $90,000 on a vehicle but I wanted to feel luxurious while driving. My CX-5 comes with everything that makes me feel like a lady behind the wheel.
I added the rhinestone steering wheel cover.
I forgot to mention the most important list.
I’m into electro-pop and swing music right now. Anything lush and dreamy sounding.
I have different playlists for different landscapes I drive through.
Majestic mountain scenery gets the orchestral swell of Operatic pop and film scores.
Dream-pop perfectly compliments lake and oceanside driving.
Heading east through the prairies, for some reason, Oldies.
Yesterday-Glacier National Park. Roger’s Pass.
Driving isn’t just a mode of transportation for me, it’s a spiritual experience.
It’s my way of embracing the future while paying respects to the past and enjoying the present.
I feel freest when I drive.
I never plan to stop at a specific area. I do try to go for a small walk every three hours so I don’t cramp up. Sometimes I feel compelled to stop and explore an area or get something to eat. Other times, I just drive because I feel so happy and I’m singing at the top of my lungs.
The only time I sing out loud is in my car.
There are two rules I have.
#1 - no hitchhikers. Under any circumstances. My safety comes first, end of story.
#2- You are not allowed to come with me. I love you dearly since you took the time to read my blog, but I do not want you in the car with me. This is my time for me.
I happily and freely share my adventures as I’m having them, but I love and want to do them alone. It’s just my nature.
Another reason why the childfree and pet-free lifestyle works well for me.
I remember asking my mother what it was like to drive. Sitting in the backseat of her Toyota Highlander, I was so jealous that she got to drive. She didn’t give me the glamorous answer I was hoping for, just said something like, “it’s just something you learn how to do.”
Mother dear, you never knew how to deal with your glamour obsessed daughter.
If she were alive today, I would have taken her to San Francisco with me and shown her a fancy adventure.
More stories for another post, I think.
Almost an Author
Former Fantastic Violinist