Why Southern California?
I made the decision to move to Southern California after a visit to my brother’s home in July of 2016. I remember the drive to the airport after spending five days traveling around Los Angeles County to Huntington Gardens, Venice Beach, and every where in between; it felt hollow, as if something was missing. My eyes filled with tears as we drove to LAX heading home; at that point, I knew then this was bigger than me and bigger than my family. Los Angeles held the key to my future so I decided that night I would make it my home. Finally, a year later I set out on a journey to change the course of my life that landed me here in Southern California!
Why Road Trip?
Well, that was not the initial plan; as a matter of fact, I vehemently refused to drive across country. When it came time to purchase a plane ticket, I could not bring myself to do so…why? My instincts took over and I now recognize that feeling, the same one that drew me to California in the first place. This is an opportunity to grow, to learn more about myself, and to test myself in a way I’ve never experienced. I then began my plans for an epic adventure.
Mapping the Adventure
Once I informed my family of my plans to drive, they could not bare for me to go alone. My mom then decided to ride shot gun as I made my way to my new home. I had a feeling I would do all of the driving so I planned not just a road trip but a five-day cross country tour that worked in time for me to rest as well as enjoy four cities and three states I’ve never visited.
The Peabody and Its Ducks
There was so much anticipation for our first day on the road; mainly because it was my first visit to Memphis, and secondly because we chose to stay at the infamous Peabody Hotel. Now I know the ducks are the mascot of The Peabody but I didn’t realize the magnitude of this relationship. Two hours after our arrival, the staff prepared for the 5 pm “duck walk” where they stroll along the red carpet to the elevator and back to their penthouse suite to rest for the evening. I couldn’t believe how many people gathered for this event snapping photos of the ducks along the roped path. Instead of getting caught up with the crowd, we decided to go about our evening with a quick walk around town then back to the hotel for some dessert.
Oklahoma City Bound
After we snacked on raspberry filled cookies and tiramisu, we decided to retreat to our beautiful suite to get some rest. Although I had Beale Street on my mind, that excursion would have to wait for another time…the bed was calling my name and I wanted to be sharp for the drive to Oklahoma City. The next day we traveled from Tennessee to Arkansas to Oklahoma with ease making excellent time along the way! So much so that we decided to make a stop we didn’t plan, which makes road trips both fun and unpredictable. This spontaneous spot provided a great meal and some entertainment found all over the state; in fact, we passed at least a dozen of these spots throughout Oklahoma! What is this place you may ask? You will have to find out next week in part 2 of my Road Trip Series!