Traveling as an act of faith

We’ve been driving the Durham-DC corridor monthly for the last 2 years (almost). Normally, even with rest stops, it takes about 4.25 hours. On Friday, it took an extra 2 hours due to traffic along the route. (The last-minute vacationers must be out in force.) Surely, it could have been worse, but arriving 2 hours later than normal definitely tests your patience and faith.

Faith enters the scene as you rely upon your fellow drivers to be nice on the road, not to exhibit road rage or other forms of aggressive driving, and trusting that when you do arrive, the anguish of sluggish traffic will quickly fade away.

My sister’s boyfriend, Donald, always reminds me of his drive from Columbus, GA to Charlotte, NC in 5 hours. It’s an impossible timetable no matter how you slice it. Moreover, claiming that you can cut an hour off a trip is the opposite of faith: over-certainty. It’s a denial of truth, too! But people constantly do it.

I wonder how many accidents are caused by people trying to break land speed records that don’t really exists while traveling the highways. What is really gained? A few minutes give or take?

There seems to be something in our human relationship with driving a long distance that makes us want to imagine that we’re better (read: faster) than we really are. It’s as if there is some real human achievement in being able to say we made it somewhere in less time than the herd. I see nothing worthy of boasting in said feats.

True accomplishment with regard to traveling is being able to exercise patience, enjoying the scenery, and co-existing with your travel companions in a considerate way. The life of faith is similar. No matter how difficult life is, we are better off developing capacity for accepting certain realities, appreciating our struggles, and nurturing relationships along the way.

Coming home from DC was another slog, though not as bad. Luckily, Tamara was there to drive the majority of the trip since I was exhausted from duty. Another longer trip is on the immediate horizon. We’ll be putting our faith to the test, again. No rush here!

Peace & light,

xk

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