Feet on the dash, I sat in the passenger seat with the windows down and the wind blowing through my hair as my boyfriend drove us through the Adirondacks in New York on our way to his annual family vacation in Vermont. Lord Huron blared on the radio as I peered outside at the lush green surroundings. The five hour drive was largely on the back winding roads through small towns filled with local mountain stores to stock up on smores supplies and lakeside campgrounds with the smell of wood fires burning. Although it was the end of July there was a crispness in the air that to my Virginia blood felt like fall. With the family canoe strapped to the roof of the Civic, we rambled toward Vermont after stopping for beef jerky to snack on the rest of the drive.
A large, red bridge came into view and I begged my boyfriend to pull over and stop so we could enjoy the perfect blue sky and rolling stream beneath the bridge. He gladly obliged, as he had just bough a drone and saw a perfect opportunity to test it out. I laid beside the bridge, listening to the stream and watching the sparrows flitting back and forth in the sky beneath the fluffy clouds. We seemed to be the only people within miles radius. A strange emotion crept up on me and settled deep in the pit of my stomach: contentment. There was a deep abiding peace in my soul that very moment despite knowing that we were delaying our arrival at the vacation house–I was finally at peace on the journey. Contentment has never been my forte. Every personality type has it’s strengths and weaknesses, and dare I say that your greatest strength is probably also something that when it is turned on its head is also your greatest weakness. I have always been someone in search of the next adventure, seeking to arrive at my destination as quickly as possible so I can cram in the maximum amount of experiences into every trip. This has many benefits, but savoring the moments like this one on the journey is not one of them.