MIND TRIP


Facebook has a lot of silly stuff to waste time with.  I ignore the games (Farmville, Marvel, Boomtown, etc.) and most of the other things they want to hook you with, but today I started messing with the “Travel Map”.

The headline said, “Most people have visited 17 cities, can you top that?”….duh…I was a traveling salesman for 25 years.  I wasn’t trying to “top” anything but I thought I’d see how many cities I’ve visited.  My eyes got blurry and I quit at 1020. 

What was “trippy” about my re-visiting these towns was the stories, the incidents, the emotions each one brought to bear.

Also, kind of weird, I saw no major cities.  No San Diego, Los Angeles, Detroit, Seattle, Portland, etc.  I probably gave up too soon, but 1020 small towns left me feeling like I had driven to each one.  I was worn out. It will be tricky tonight, when my hard-working wife comes through the door, and I try to explain I’m exhausted from doing “trip advisor” on Facebook.  I better keep my mouth shut and hope she’s too busy to read this.

Most of my career travels were on the west coast.  There is NO California city I haven’t visited.  That means worked in, met local business folks, studied travel guides (no google back then) and probably found good eating spots, cheap but clean motels and maybe a pub here and there.

It’s been six or seven years since I retired from the road travels, so as I scrolled and clicked through the myriad of cities, I found that the city’s name, when recognized, brought, first, an emotion from my memory, and then, maybe a smile, a frown, and hundreds of stories to share.  Some of those cities I traveled to when I was between 6 and 16.  My grandmother took me on a 3 week travel adventure every summer, all over the USA and Canada.  Other cities that came to me were family vacations when my children were young. Some were just road adventures. I remember when I was a freshman at Purdue University, my buddy Jack and I decided to just get away one morning after class. We left the Purdue campus in Northwest Indiana and decided at every road’s dead-end, we would turn right and continue on, turning right when the next road ended.  Six hours and a case of beer later, we ended up in Celina, Ohio.  Obviously when I saw that “town” today, I burst out laughing.

Whoever designed this “app” probably taught water-boarding as a hobby.  There is no pattern of cities. Every country in the world and every city in every country randomly pop up in groups of 10 and you click on the circle that says “been there-done that.” It would be so easy if they did it by country and region but who am I to tell Mr. Zuckerberg how to run his company?

About bakoheat

Writer/Musician
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