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Holly McCamant: After a long road trip, you can handle anything

Road trips are the strange sibling of travel. Some consider them the ultimate vacation. However, others see them as the less desirable oddball.

I’ve actually been on a fair amount of road trips. It started when I was young. Every two years we have a family reunion, and every other one of those is in a certain place in Oregon. For a very long time I have been doing the whole drive to Montana, meet up with relatives, and driven on to Oregon.

Another shorter one I’ve done is when my Mom and I flew to Pennsylvania and we met up with her sister’s family and then all of us drove to North Carolina. We had a younger kid in that car and I can tell you that the road trip goes much longer with that going on. I had just done the whole Oregon road trip thing, though, so it wasn’t that bad.

This November when I went to New York and Washington, D.C., we took a bus 30 straight hours to Washington D.C. from Frazee. We didn’t stop at a hotel. We traveled from Washington D.C. to New York City and after a stop in Lake Ariel, Pa., we made it to Niagara Falls. One of the most amazing weeks of my life was spent in a bus.

Now, I’ve completed my longest one yet. We had a family reunion in South Lake Tahoe, Calif. On Friday, I woke up at 3:45 a.m. and headed off with my dad to Butte, Mont., to meet up with my aunt. We traveled 890 miles and then I was dropped off and my aunt and two cousins and I rode up to Twin Falls, Idaho. That was 21 straight hours in a car.

In the morning we got up and traveled another 11 hours. That meant for a total of 32 out of 48 hours I was in a car. With nine hours of sleep combined in the past two nights and barely having been anywhere on the car, we finally arrived at our family reunion at one of the prettiest places I have ever been.

Road trips, though extremely tiring, do have their benefits. First off, they do save money and time. With my busy life, I have missed out on reading some amazing books. On the way to Lake Tahoe, I managed to read “Born to Run”, and that is something I am so glad I didn’t miss out on. Also, when I finished “Born to Run” and wasn’t helping distract my six year old cousin, I got to the point where I had nothing to do but gaze at the Nevada landscape and became familiar with it. You get a different geographic perspective.

I’ve learned that with all of this traveling you become a little numb to being in a car. Once you’ve gone 21 hours without a break except for meals, you get this feeling that you can handle anything. I have learned to have a positive attitude because with road trips, you can’t control everything.

Road trips are long and tiring with little snippets of happiness when you try a really good new restaurant (Minnesota doesn’t have TacoTime). You learn so much, and the destination is even more amazing once you actually get there.

Holly McCamant is a junior at Frazee-Vergas High School.