Yesterday while we were driving around in the car, Ben announced, “Day 300!”
Day 300. Man. When we started this trip, I wasn’t even sure that I would make it past Day 30. The idea of driving non-stop around the country with 2 dudes for a year (one of them my husband), with no home and one pair of shoes apiece (ok i also had flip flops, but they take up almost no room), interviewing strangers to see how America fares in the new and improved effort to live sustainably in a basically disposable culture…well, it seemed a gargantuan task, to say the least. I really had no idea what to expect. One of my brothers believed I would NOT make it, and was surprised every time I called him from the road. Well-meaning friends assured me many times that they would not think less of me if I left the trip before its end. But I didn’t. I couldn’t. And the only reason I’m leaving now is because I have a new mission: motherhood.
It hasn’t always been easy, with 3 of us tightly packed into our little Ford Escape Hybrid, juggling schedules, roadmaps, phone calls, emails, our psycho 10-CD factory-installed Navigational system, not to mention differing ideas about who & what should not be missed in any given state. We have different personalities, we three. Different preferences, patience levels, tolerances, judgments, thoughts about how things should be done, levels of perfectionism, ways of communicating…We haven’t always seen eye to eye. But I will say that this has provided us a pretty cool opportunity to learn how to navigate our own personal roadmaps…
I think we’ve shared from the beginning a sort of blind trust that humanity is basically good and that, given the chance, (the knowledge, the awareness of HOW to change, and what is out there) people will begin to do the right thing, and our children and grandchildren will have the chance to know how connected we are to every living thing on this planet, and there will be something left of beauty to sustain them.
I am so inspired by Mark and Ben, still – to see them work so endlessly, and to still be so driven after 9 1/2 months of solid work. I am so inspired by the people we have met along the way and the hundreds of blogs and websites we have become acquainted with since Your Environmental Road Trip began. I can hardly keep up with it all, there is so much going on out right now in this push to be green and learn to live sustainably. What an amazing wave of waking up! I had no idea when we left how big a wave we would all be riding. In every single state without exception we have found people caring deeply, working hard, thinking creatively, and making changes that are being reflected in government and legislature and even big corporations. Greenwashing does happen, sure it does, but this trip is making me believe that it won’t hold a candle to the real movement that is washing over us, which is Truth, and which will carry us into a brighter, cleaner, healthier future if we let it.
I am leaving the Road part of YERT for the boys to finish but I will continue the journey in Louisville, preparing for a completely different set of challenges. There are many things which have been made somewhat easy on the trip but which will be harder in “real life” (ie: garbage). I am very thankful to the boys for being gentlemen to me since I’ve been pregnant. I am honored to have been part of these last 10 months, and to have now the opportunity to raise a child who will hopefully benefit from everything we’ve learned.
Here we go. Babysteps to a better way of Life. Bon Voyage, boys, be safe! We will keep the green fires burning….and be sure that the waste smoke is being used for something…