The trip’s over; what next?

August 20, 2009


LOCATION: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

My goal when I started this journey was to drive 9,000 miles and hopefully see 40+ states. I grossly underestimated the amount of miles. I guess maybe it would’ve been 9000 if I drove in a straight line, but I forgot that once I arrived in cities, I’d be driving all around the city. Fortunately, gas prices were under $3 most of the way. In my initial budget, I estimated gas at $4.50/gallon just to be safe, so the extra mileage didn’t hurt.

I ended up going over budget by $27.58, which isn’t bad for 125 days on the road. In fact, I was right on track until the last couple weeks. If Ididn’t have to buy subway passes in Chicago, Boston, and New York, I probably would’ve come in on budget.

The trip was a lot of fun. I feel like maybe I should’ve spent more time in small towns and talked to people there to get a sense of life in little towns all over the country, but I think I did as much of that as time would allow. I saw a ton of places I never thought I’d see.


In fact, today I was just trying to think of major American cities that I’ve never been to, and there are only a few left: Miami, Phoenix, St. Louis. That’s about it.

What’s the next frontier? Probably Europe. I spoke with many people who’ve said they couchsurfed through Europe. That would be an affordable way to go. But that’s probably a few years off. I’d love to see Alaska someday, too. For now, it’s time to get cleaned up, get a job, and start saving some money again.

I was looking through my travel pictures today and I still have months’ worth of unpublished material that I’ll continue to blog about. Plus, I’ll write about some of the past trips I’ve taken in my life – Toronto, Orlando, Cleveland, etc. And, I’ll blog about new trips that I take in the future. Just the other day I was driving through Indiana in hardcore Amish country, and I thought, This would make a great blog post! So the posts will keep coming.


I’m planning to move to Chicago on September 1, assuming I can find a short-term sublet, so there will be plenty to write about from there as well. Thanks for reading, and keep checking back!