Wednesday, July 13, 2011


This past weekend, I took a solo trip to visit my family in Knoxville, Tennessee.  I left after my morning class on Thursday, eager to get on the road.  There was no appointment to rush to, but I rushed anyway.  Gotta make good time!  GPS running, I watched the bottom right hand corner as minutes dropped off of my arrival time.  I sped through a drive-thru for lunch, precariously balancing barbeque sauce and chicken fingers on my car’s console.  You can’t waste time going in to eat!  As I hit the lonely stretch of road after Chattanooga heading north to Knoxville, I approached a bend in the road and was greeted by glaring red tail lights.  Gridlock.  Seeing no end to the mess in sight, I quickly took the next exit and punched in a detour on my navigation.  Thirty minutes added to my time, but at least I was moving.  For a mile or two, that is.  Turns out, everyone else had the same idea, and we crept, bumper to bumper, through the quiet outskirts of a town certainly unused to this much attention.  I probably would have fared better sticking it out on the interstate.

However, I had somewhat of an epiphany, sitting alone in my car on a blazing day with the AC pumping.  In that town that I first cursed for having a 25 mph speed limit, I saw an absolutely beautiful landscape.  The small road I was on stretched over the Tennessee River, and as I crossed, I saw a picturesque old railroad bridge spanning the water below, casting a beautiful reflection into the murky blue water.  Banks of lush green trees framed the view.  This quaint little town sat nestled right at the edge of a powerful, beautiful river.  I saw an older couple sitting outside at a downtown cafĂ©, chatting amicably, no doubt watching the horde of cars invade their little town and reminiscing on times past.  My frustration melted as I took in the sights.

Why are we always rushing, even when we have nowhere to be?  Why can’t we take a detour every now and then, stop to get some lunch, chat with a stranger?  Perhaps it’s the wannabe photographer in me, but I was moved by that scene of an ancient bridge looming over a sleepy town.  Isn’t that the beauty of it all, being moved by a scene that tugs at your soul?  From that point on, I did not regret my change in course.  I simply basked in the pleasure of it, knowing this is something I would never have seen if I did not get derailed.  My only regret is that I didn’t stop to take a picture.  

[As seen in Today in Peachtree City :)  ]

1 comment:

  1. So true. Last weekend we took a bunch of backroads on the way to the cottage instead of the regular, congested highway and it was so great. Windows down, shades on, music up and wide-open countryside. It was a great start to the weekend!


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