Driving Vs. Flying

I was asked in a comment if driving was better or worse than flying and as it turns out, I’ve been pondering something along those lines and my response is more than enough material for a post, so here goes.

In this particular situation I think the drive was more than worth it. I got to see parts of the country that I never would have seen otherwise, all sorts of art, and I also got to meet a cast of characters that I never would have met (Big John, Tuk the medicine man/storyteller, the Tibetan Kid, Gio the Buddhist and his girlfriend Diane, several New England transplants who honed in on my Red Sox hat and MA plates, the small town lady at the truck stop whose name currently escapes me and many others.) If I had just dumped my GTP, shipped my stuff and flown out, not only would I have missed all those places and chance encounters, I also would have missed an important transitional phase. One moment I would have been living on the east coast and the next *snaps fingers* on the west coast. It’s a small world, but it shouldn’t be that small.

I don’t mind flying (some do), in fact I have put so many air miles under me that I can literally close my eyes and walk through several airports without bumping into any one other than those first time fliers who are lost and out of place. You can spot people like me in the airports and on the plane fairly easily. We are the ones who have only one carry-on; who appear to teleport through security as if the guy with the wand merely stopped us to ask for some change; who hold our bag in front of us as we board instead of smacking everyone with it like a pinball as we go down the aisle; who sleep or read during take offs and landings; who stand on the plane without holding on to everything and anything in even rough turbulence; and who never really bother to look out the window anymore in a odd similarity to how the “Men In Black” no longer look up at the stars.

Of course, if you’re traveling a considerable distance, or are on a tight schedule, flying just makes sense. However, when it comes to driving, there are certainly a couple of bonuses too. For one, if your schedule was as open as mine was , it really doesn’t matter if you go left or right (Which, oddly enough,  is a thrill on its own and gives me a new appreciation for the ending of Castaway.). You also are not limited to what little food you brought with you plus the soda and bag of peanuts with 6 nuts in it that many airlines begrudgingly give you (In which case, you should stop flying with them.). If you’re hungry, you can just stop… have the urge for some real coffee… well… you’re still pretty much SOL unless your near civilization in which case you can just stop.

Now that I’ve been a Road Warrior, I’m looking at the map with a fresh set of eyes. What looked to me before as incredibly far is now a day drive. Which is a perspective I hope to make use of for some photography-centric trips. But regardless of that, there are still plenty of places that I would still be more inclined to fly to.

So the question is “Was driving better or worse than flying“. I guess the best answer I can give is… Yes.

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~ by ghendar on January 21, 2009.