the open road
Why do we want to be those people on the open road roaring into the sunset with nothing but a suitcase in the backseat? Is it just a luxury of a post-war affluence and their novelty of the new interstate highway system? Did it auto-drip into our craniums from decades of movies and music videos, novels and inventions? Or is whimsical travel part of who we are? I mean, we are constantly being told that escaping responsibility equates freedom. I guess that make sense when it comes to unfortunate emotional/social responsibilities (a bad marriage, an abusive home, etc)—but escaping from good work, solid ground, and healthy food no longer seems like freedom to me.
There is no freedom on a road trip. It is the epitome of bondage. You at the mercy of so many things: money, weather, oil, road conditions, food availability, police officers, traffic laws and so on.Your entire survival is in the hands of other people (and corporations). I think people are confusing rapid speeds out of doors with freedom.
Let me tell you what freedom isn't: Freedom is not an open highway. It is not drilling for oil. It is not having an endless line of credit. Nor is it having your every whim and comfort catered to. Freedom is the ability to wake up, laugh, eat, work, and love without fear. Freedom is walking outside your front door and knowing that if the world around you falls apart, you can make it a little while, maybe longer. It means not being at the whims of the power company, grocery store, and highway crews. For some of us that means a garden, saddle horse, and a flock of chickens. For others it means a thriving community where neighbors know each other by first names and help and support each other. But it certainly isn't something you can achieve peeling off into the sunset. Not unless you're driving home.
What is freedom to you?
illustration from kunstlercast.com