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Long Car Rides

I sat there in that terrible yellow rental truck afraid.

It wasn’t because I was leaving my home behind. No, all those fears I felt stirring inside me every night for the past few weeks had suddenly disappeared the moment I put my seat belt on. Those fears were replaced with a new one. A giant one.

I was scared to drive the truck.

Pathetic? Maybe, but there was a trailer attached to it.

Luckily, I was sitting in the passenger seat. My dad was doing the driving, but I knew my turn would come. I would kill us both.

Until then, I pressed my forehead against the window watching familiar places turn into strange formations. Florida is a long way from Ohio. I swear long car rides turn me into a little child. I stared with unblinking eyes at the passing mountains and imagined the creatures that lurked behind the trees. When the mountains turned into flat swampy land, I imagined the indians and their families who lived there so long ago. North Carolina turned into South Carolina, and that into Georgia, and eventually I found myself in Florida. Welcome to my new life.

New life? When did that happen? When did junior high turn into high school, and that into college, and how did I eventually find myself all grown up? I don’t know. But I do know one thing. I’m still scared to drive large trucks.

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