Driving Across America

Friday, August 25, 2000

Entry 1: How did this whole mess get started?

Funny (expensive) Story: A long time ago I paid $200 to PriceLine.com for a round-trip ticket the East Coast for my friends wedding (Cathy). My friend Heidi says "Why don't you come out earlier? We can hang out and you won't be as rushed." My tickets were non-refundable but I figured that I got such a good price, it didn't matter so much, so I bought another round-trip ticket to the East Coast except this time the best price I could get from PriceLine.com was $250.

Later, I decide to go the Burning Man. I've wanted to go for 5 years and each year I've tried but something always came up so I decided that this was the year since I had the time and money. So I signed up.

About a week later I figured out that Cathy's wedding happened right in the middle of Burning Man! Ouch. So which do I go to? Burning Man or her wedding? I decided to go to both.

I can catch the first couple days of Burning Man (but have to miss the burning of the man), then go to the wedding. At first I figured I'd do a round-trip to Nevada so I could catch my flight, but then a better thought occurred to me. I've always wanted to drive across the US, so here was my chance to do that as well. So then the plan was to drive to NV for the Burning Man, then head to CT to hang out with Heidi, then drive to NY for Cathy's wedding.

That plan depends on whether my friend Nicole joins me to Burning Man or not. If Nicole goes with me, then I've decided to skip the wedding and attend Burning Man. Nicole is undecided so I let my "wedding friends" know that I'm waiting for her decision. Weeks go by and Nicole won't decide either way.

I get tired of waiting for Nicole to decide so I give her a deadline. If she doesn't decide by the deadline, I'm going without her. The deadline comes and goes and no word from Nicole. I call her and she says "I'm probably not going to go." After all that, I still can't get a concrete "yes" or "no" from her, so I decide for her. I'm going alone.

I call Heidi to let her know that I'm coming to the wedding but discover that she has grown tired of waiting for me and has cancelled our plans and made new plans that don't include me.

Now I've got two round-trip tickets to CT that I'm not using and I'm driving to NV to attend the Burning Man for two days, then driving cross-country to NY for the wedding. As the day approaches for me to leave, I begin to realize that I'm not ready for such a long trip. Much more planning is needed if I'm to have a successful one-month road trip.

I make the big decision to not go to the wedding and to go to Burning Man when I'm good and ready.

I hope my Nissan Pathfinder holds up after all of the abuse I've dished out.

Date Created September 15, 2000
Last Updated April 12, 2006
Contact: patcoston@gmail.com