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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Car Trip (07/18/05)

TITLE: Planes, Trains, and Automobiles...and Ships!
By Lauren Bombardier


I love to travel by car. I love the way I feel close to the earth and what is going on around me as I travel. Unfortunately, nothing extraordinary has really happened to me while on a "road-trip." For me, other kinds of traveling are – well, read for yourself!

I've been on an airplane several times, but have you flown recently? To economize, they have made the seats smaller! Now, I'm not a small person but I'm also not one to scream "discrimination!" However, when the seat is too small to be comfortable I have a bit of a problem. I can't afford to fly first-class to get a bigger seat, neither can I afford to buy a ticket for another seat. Fortunately, I'm not quite that big but I feel sorry for the ones who are. On the other hand, at least they aren't pressed against strangers and all their idiosyncrasies. On top of that, whenever I have gotten a window seat (which I prefer), I get stuck on the wing. This is definitely not the way I like to travel.

I love ferries. We lived in Seattle the summer before I turned 14. People always ask me how I liked the rain when I was living there. Honestly, it only rained a couple of times the few months we were there but the rest of the time was bright and sunny. On the weekends we would take ferry trips to the various islands in the Puget Sound. Those were my favorite times. I'd stand at the front of the ferry and let the wind of our passage whip through my hair. I never felt any kind of motion sickness, but we were never on the ferry long enough. We'd visit whatever island town we had decided to go to and then we were back on the ferry. I would look for dolphins or orcas, but I never saw any. Someday, I'd like to go back and ride the ferries. I'd also like to go by ship too, maybe overseas. I'd want to go on a real traveling ship. I think that would be great fun!

I've been on a train once. I was in elementary school and we went for a short ride. It was a disappointment, but since it was only a field trip we couldn't really go anywhere. Someday, I'll go on Amtrak. I thought I would go to my cousin's wedding on Amtrak, but it actually cost more than the airplane did! I think America is just too big to rely on the train as regular transportation. In Europe, the train is still widely used. I read books set overseas all the time and inevitably someone travels by train. Maybe someday I can go overseas and really find out what traveling by rail is like. That will be after my trip in the ship, of course.

I have traveled by bus…twice. The first time was only for about 13 hours. I had to go from Twin Falls, Idaho, to Portland, Oregon. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. There weren't any "weirdos" on the bus; in fact, there was a nice older woman that I sort of latched onto as a traveling partner. The second time was for 27 hours. Can you imagine traveling on one bus with the same people for 27 hours? I wasn't sure about it at first, but I did it anyway. It was interesting. I had hoped to find the same sort of camaraderie on my second trip that I had on the first, but it was not meant to be. Yes, I did meet some friendly people but it just wasn't the same.

Last May, I drove from Twin Falls, Idaho, to Great Bend, Kansas, by myself. It took me two days, but they were great days. I got to see the country, and when I saw some familiar landmarks I didn't have to worry about strange looks from others when I whooped out loud. I had some time for reflection. I had some time to reminisce. I missed my friends in Twin Falls, but I was heading towards family in Great Bend. I spent time with my family and old friends, and I made some new ones. Even though I'm no longer in Great Bend, I still think about that trip and consider it the best one yet. I hope that someday I can travel by car again, because I love it!

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Member Comments
Member Date
Nina Phillips07/25/05
I liked how you squeezed other modes of travel memories with this challenge. Very neat! God bless ya, littlelight
Brandi Roberts07/28/05
I liked all the different modes of transportation. My husband (6'7" and 320lbs) surely knows about planes...Thanks for sharing!
Linda Watson Owen07/28/05
You've helped me remember many trips I've made by different modes. It's nice to walk down memory lane!
Beth Muehlhausen07/31/05
Interesting and entertaining accounts. Like this line: "...when I saw some familiar landmarks I didn't have to worry about strange looks from others when I whooped out loud."