This clip reminds me of what happened after Nashville. I started towards Charlotte, North Carolina, cause that’s what my pendulum told me ;) When I arrived however I had no idea what to do. I found a parking spot, went into the city and felt totally lost. Normally I like to wander about and see what comes up, but this time it felt different. I was looking for a Chamber of Commerce and couldn’t find it in the first place, which must’ve been a sign. I asked a security guard at the old building where I could find it and walked over to the new place. Normally the Chamber of Commerce have people that work there to help you out, see where you can go and advice you. This new Chamber however was a small place in the Convention Centre, with no people around to ask questions. I looked at maps and flyers and nothing really stood out. I didn’t know what to do so I got out and crossed the street to get some lunch.
I texted my friends and I felt completely crazy. I didn’t know what to do, what I wanted, where to go and basically it was a tornado in my head spitting out randomness and craziness without having any clue what to do. I got a couple of replies and most of the suggestions of my friends where “Go do something for you, do what you love, rest and clear your head”. As I’ve been either driving towards my friends or spending time with them I basically had no time for myself and I was a little overwhelmed with everything I’ve done so far. I looked up a movie theatre watched a movie and after that I asked google for extended stay hotels. I booked one in Matthews, which was amazing cause that pendulum I used pointed at a street right across the street I stayed at, which I found out the day after I booked the room ;) That week I basically locked myself up in my room, watched TV, slept a lot and I realised I have been running on fumes. I was exhausted and I hadn’t noticed that until I stopped and took a breath. At the end of the week I knew I had to leave, cause I didn’t want to stay there.
I figured I just got onto a highway and drove to the coast. So there I went on the road again, just driving and chilling. When I got to the coast I arrived at a haven. If I am going to a coast, I want to go to the beach and not a haven. I didn’t really check out where beaches where cause I wanted to just go and see where I’d end up, without a plan or expectations (which obviously I had, otherwise I couldn’t be disappointed I ended up there). I looked for a hotel and booked a room for a night. When I got into the room I, again, felt lost. I talked to my friends that I didn’t know what I was doing and that I wanted to take this trip without any planning. Just go with the flow. I found out I am not a person who can do that. I need some sort of direction and if plans change that’s fine with me, I am very adjustable, but I need some sort of direction to go on.
So I figured I’d go towards Wisconsin where I have another friend. It would take me about 3 or 4 days and all I needed to figure out was which way to go. Do I go all the way up Michigan and than drop down to Green Bay or do I go towards Chicago and than drive up that way? I figured I just drive up to the point where I needed to make a decision to go North or West. I knew someone in Cincinnati, drove up there, we hung out for a couple of hours and my decision was made. I’d go up so I could go to Canada, which was about 1,5 hours out of my way, but hey I was so close so why the hell not right :)
I drove all the way up to Canada, crossed the border, got a stamp in my passport, ate a burger and drove back. “You drove back? Just got food and didn’t stay?” I hear you say and question. That’s right, I just popped into Canada for a hot minute, ate at a road side bar and jumped back in the car towards the US.
On my way to Michigan and in Michigan was the first time it felt like I was on a vacation. That state didn’t feel like home, all the other states did. There wasn’t anything wrong with the state it was just a feeling I got. I drove all the way up to Canada and back in one day and than it was time to look for a motel. As upper Michigan is a ski area not a lot of places where open, so I had to search a little before I found a place to crash. I found one that was pretty nice and I was amazed that not a lot of other places where open. It was still very cold and the lakes where still frozen so it was beautiful in that area. There was not a lot of snow anymore so there’s no skiing but for the rest I was amazed that there weren’t a lot of people in that area.
19 April was my birthday and I was very glad I got to spend it with my friend in Wisconsin. I knew I was going to get a new tattoo on this trip but didn’t know when. My friend and I where talking about tattoos and she said there was a good tattoo place near here. We went on a Saturday and it felt good so I decided to get my tattoo right there. My dad texted me around 5:05pm to wish me a happy birthday so on Dutch time I had my tattoo done on my birthday, which is awesome!
On my actual US time birthday we went for breakfast/ lunch, did some bowling and what’s a birthday without a proper pie? Not a birthday, so we did the whole pie thing too :D
The last town
It would take me about 3 days to get from my friend in Wisconsin to my friends in Bozeman, Montana. On my way I actually participated in some road kill. Seriously??? Yes, there was some little tiny animal crawling right across the interstate and popped up and I couldn’t stop or swerve around. I tried to avoid it, but I drove straight over it and I felt sad…. I didn’t know what the rules where so I kept driving and the way I hit I believe it got killed instantly. That’s what I choose to believe anyway. A little later I saw a rattlesnake on the interstate and now I know how I’m gonna act when I see a snake in real life :)
In Bozeman I stayed with my college friend, hung out with some other friends and on that night we stayed in our old condo. It’s weird to say it was my condo, because I only lived there for 6 weeks, the rest of the academic year I stayed on campus. My friends parents still own the condo and here brother lives there now. He was okay with us staying there for a night and it was amazing and freaky at the same time. They still had all the bedding and a table I brought over in the room and my friend suggested that I stayed in my old room. It was good and weird at the same time.
I wanted to go to campus, and I could, but it felt off. One day I was on my way and it started raining so I turned around. The moment I turned around the rain stopped so I took it as a sing. I don’t miss not going to campus this this and I am glad I didn’t go.
While in Bozeman I also met some of my other friends and with each and everyone it felt like no time had passed. It’s been almost 9 years since I left Bozeman and since I’ve seen them and it is incredible that after all this time it feels like no time has passed and that we have such a strong bond.
I am glad I have so many amazing people that I can call my family all over this amazing continent :)
In a next blog I’ll write stuff that I’ve learned along the way, where to go from here and about expectations.
For now this is it ;)