Travel Memories & Settling In


Now safely ensconced in our new-to-us Georgia home, Maddie & me are starting to really get settled in. Truth be told, it wasn’t much of an adjustment since Sheila is amazingly welcoming and makes things so easy for us. And Bella may be the most polite big dog I’ve ever met (and Madison is taking full advantage of Bella’s good nature).

We haven’t really talked about our trip at all … It was two trips from Jersey to Georgia in the Durango, a 12-13 hour drive each way. On trip #1 southbound, I was accompanied by Madison … if you can call sleeping for 11 of the 13 hours “company”. I had a long talk with her about holding up her end of the deal, asking her to keep me company for the ride and not do her usual combination of snore/fart while we’re in confined spaces, but she just ignored me. Sheila has decided that Madison is “a little lost” most times, a polite Southern way to say that the dog is a bit stupid. Sheila is very polite, unlike my snore-farting dog.

Madison – still a Jersey dog

In both trips I traveled mostly at night . It’s so much easier to drive when the roads are less crowded and you’re not fighting rush hour traffic in either Jersey, Baltimore or Atlanta.  My EZ-Pass account took a huge beating, but fortunately Georgia doesn’t really have “required” toll roads (they have some optional express lanes that they’ll charge you a premium to drive) (I didn’t really see too many people taking the “toll” lanes so I guess they just prefer to be stuck in maddening traffic down here in Georgia) so that toll-paying abuse will come to a quick close. Equally fortunate, there is no toll to be paid as I walk from the kitchen to my office or music area, so my daily commute to work is painless.  Unless Sheila puts up a toll gate at the doors to my areas, my days of paying to get to work are pretty much over.

Traveling at night has its challenges, particularly staying awake. I’ve found that putting in a solid 6 hours before stopping really helps to cut down on fatigue for me. I can do the first 6 hours easy enough and at that point I need to put gas into the car, so stopping for fuel, coffee, maybe a bite to eat (although food choices are horrible at 3am in North Carolina) and depending on how I feel, perhaps a quick nap or meditation (I practice TM, been doing so for 25+ years … y’all should try it) (see how I’ve adapted to my new Southern-ness, y’all??) (Don’t expect a lot more Southern charm just yet, though).

If I had given even a moments thought to my upcoming drive while jamming basses into the car, I would have realized that I needed to recline the seat a bit if I intended to nap. But I didn’t give ANY thought to what I was doing and ended up with a bass speaker cabinet shoved against the back of the drivers seat. So, when I tried to mediate or take a quick snooze, I remained in the exact same position I was in while driving … except for the arrival of a midget dog on my lap, making an already uncomfortable position even worse. And Maddie “harrumphed” at me every time I tried to shift my position; God forbid I tried to be just a little bit comfortable.

All-in-all, the trips were successful and both the occupants and the cargo arrived safely, as mentioned in my prior postings. Sheila has given me full access to her beautiful home and I have two very nice spaces for my AWT-south office and my music area. I have my shakey-head guy that Jennifer from AWT gave me a long time ago, she made sure I took shakey-head with me when I packed up my stuff for the south-bound trip. Shakey-head has been with me for a long time and he reminds me that, although I’m now in Georgia, some parts of New Jersey will never leave me.

 Thanks, Jen!

2 comments on “Travel Memories & Settling In”

  1. Such vividity! A man living his life in the full on mode. I respectfully ask for a coda to this piece: Was there a soundtrack to your solo journey? Or was it all mental processing? Were you atop a Saturn V or carried along on a pleasant current with landmarks easing by?


  2. Mental processing ceased quite some time ago, coincidentally about the same time music became even more prevalent. A goodly chunk of those trips were accompanied by female jazz vocalists, in particular a lady named Stacey Kent and another named Sophie Milman. Both quite talented with established bands that support them, allowing for excellent soloing and ensemble play accompanying their vocal talents. I have Sheila to thank for introducing me to both …


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