My roadtrip has officially begun! If you’re wondering what led me to the open road (temporarily) check out my first article, Leap of Faith, here. I was officially in the car, heading West, and I was jamming. Not like sing-a-long and nod your head jamming, I was belting road trip classics from the top of my lungs, full of excitement.
Did I shed a few tears over Dallas? Over loves lost? Over friendships that will soon be far away? You better believe it. But in my head those tears were a symbol of a time well lived. It is not easy to find those places and people worth crying over. I am grateful to have found those in Dallas.
As the city faded into the background, and the Texas scenery got progressively flatter and barer, I felt at peace. I was me. I chose me. I chose to not let life pass me by in a blur and to chase happiness. I have come to find that it doesn’t just come to you. You need to work to find it. You need to recognize when you have it. And you need to never let it go. So, if I need to drive over 2,000 miles in my pursuit of happiness, well, I’m going to need some snacks. Plus, I was willing to walk 2,653 miles in my pursuit of happiness so driving should be a piece of cake.
As I was driving, the first thing that blew me away was coming upon the massive fields of wind turbines. I have seen turbines before and still every time I am amazed by them. Something worth knowing about me is that I am a huge nerd. I love the environment, I love learning new things, I love fun facts, and I love all of that about myself. So of course, I had to do some research on wind turbines. Here is a cool video explaining how they work for anyone interested:
Fast facts according to the AWEA (American Wind Energy Association):
- There are nearly 60,000 wind turbines in the US.
- Texas has the most wind capacity at a whopping 29,407 MW. The next closest? Iowa with 10,664 MW.
- In 2019, wind energy generated 7.2% of the nation’s electricity but in some states it provides over 20% of the state’s electricity.
Where was I, oh yeah, my roadtrip! It had been a pretty long drive and I was dying to take some pictures. I had never been to west Texas and wanted to grab some shots. I take a ton of pictures and videos. I love documenting everything because I don’t want to miss a thing. And so, I decided to look for a place to stop. I came across a cute little coffee shop. I didn’t really need coffee because I was already wired from coffee before but hey…it was too cute of a shop to not go in.
It was THE PERFECT STOP. The building was colorful, and I just knew that it was going to be a memorable place. It was called the Turquoise Coffee Stop – named aptly as the building was a very vibrant blue. I went in and it was a great space. Colorful and unique. I talked with the owner a bit, I had made it in time just before they closed. I was the only person there (COVID). I ordered a latte and quickly changed my mind when talking to the owner. She recommended a cherry chocolate latte, a specialty there. How could I say no? Cherries? Chocolate? A recommendation from the owner? It was delicious.
At the exit, there was a push pin map. It was clearly a drive through type of stop. There were pins all over the map of the US. I pushed one in right near Alpharetta, GA, my hometown, and was on my way. I honestly had no idea where in Texas I was. Not until writing this here and now am I seeing that I was in Chillicothe, TX. If you are ever passing through – it is worth a stop at the Turquoise Coffee Stop.
With yet another few shots of espresso in me (sorry body) I continued on to Amarillo. Not wanting to miss anything on my roadtrip, and, racing the sunset, I rushed to Cadillac ranch. A truly Texas style spectacle along Route 66 near Amarilla with 10 Cadillac cars jutting out of the ground, covered in spraypaint.I had read about the site on my Roadtrippers app and it looked too colorful to pass up.
You can read more about the origin of it here. It was busy, many aspiring artists (or not haha) came loaded down with cans of spraypaint ready to take their turn beautifying the cars. I watched a few artists at work, appreciating the rainbow of colors and the outpouring of expression.
Having a sudden overwhelming feeling of missing out, I picked up a few cans of spraypaint until I found one that still had some paint – made a smiley face, a heart, and a peace sign. Peace. Love. And Happiness. Always. And then I doused my hands with Purell. My handy dandy friend in this crazy world.
I loaded up my camera gear, hopped in my car, made it to my AirBnB, and finally, slept.