I love to drive. I always have. I love racy little sports cars, and I've even owned a few in my time. I usually drive too fast, and I'd drive even faster if I wasn't afraid of getting caught.
There, I've admitted one of my few dangerous passions. My love of driving is a very concrete example of the way I feel about Diane Ackerman's quote. Because as much as I love driving, that's how much I despise riding.
Of course, it all comes down to being in control - of whatever horsepower you've got rumbling under the hood, and whatever dreams you have spinning in your heart. I like to be the one in charge of getting myself to whatever destination I have in mind - whether it's to work on Monday, or to my goal of completing that NaNoWriMo novel in 30 days. So, I get really irritated when construction barrels pop up on my favorite freeway, slowing me down, and impeding my progress. I get angry when circumstances (completely out of my control) play havoc with my plans and put the brakes on my dreams. When I suddenly have twice as much work to do, because someone at work quit their job. When the economic markets fall and my carefully crafted plans for vacations or retirement are suddenly rendered impossible. All of a sudden, I'm not only a helpless passenger, but one whose life is stuck in a traffic jam 100 miles long.
And as hard as I work to maintain my position on life's highway, there are times when I'm forced to crawl into the backseat because someone or something has wrested the wheel away from me. And when I'm huddled there, unable to clearly see the road ahead, its really easy to simply give up and go to sleep until the trip is over.
But then I hear that deep throated rumble of the engine, the rush of the wind in my hair, and suddenly I'm strong enough to take control of this journey after all. No looking back at what might have been, or crying over the if-only's. Just grab the wheel, put my foot to the floor, and aim in the direction I want to go.
To paraphrase Forest Gump, life is like a road trip...sometimes I'm the driver, and sometimes I'm just along for the ride. But, wherever I happen to sit in the car, I try to follow this advice from motivational author Byrd Baggett...
photo courtesy of stockxpert