This country is very large

West Virginia / Oct. 13, 2012 / by Amy
This country is very large

There’s no denying that we’ve covered a lot of miles this year. In fact, our dear Stanley’s  odometer ticked over into six digits last week, and in crossing 100,000 miles, that means we’ve traveled over 23,000 miles since getting Stanley in Texas last year. That is almost once around the world...

Time and space now feels very different than when we started. Traveling an hour or an hour and a half to a story feels like absolutely nothing next to the 8 hour or more drives we’ve done. When we’re half an hour from the nearest coffee shop, that’s nothing, and if the grocery store is ten minutes away, we’ve hit gold. 

This is a very different feeling than I’m used to. When I’m at home, my world is much smaller than this, and when I’m back in St Andrews, even smaller than that. In fact, when I get home, the 30 minute walk to the nearest metro stop feels like miles after the distances in St Andrews. You can probably get from one end of the town to the other in less time. 

I’ve definitely picked up some driving miles this year and distances aren’t nearly what they seemed before. I do find driving in an automatic a far easier job than driving a manual, and far less tiring. In traffic, the automatic transmission is amazing, and when there’s no one on the road, I’ve even become used to using the cruise control, which is equally wonderful. 

Once I get back to driving my much shorter distances, I’m sure that I’ll be back to feeling that 3 hours is quite a distance. My drives in the UK often mean a lot more cars on smaller and windier roads, and driving a manual car does take a bit more energy than I’ve been used to this year. 

In such a big country as the US, driving 8 hours can sometimes not even get you from one end of a state to another, but would get you a fair way from one end of the UK to the other. Just like when I go from home to St Andrews, distances all become relative and I’m sure there’s no way I’ll be doing the 7 hour drives I’ve done this year when I’m back in Europe. 

Photo Credit: Flickr: tobiwei