One year ago I had just come through one of the worst weeks and months of my life. I had lost my wife, my home, and my boss told me they were going to cut my salary by at least 1/3. By the time my birthday arrived, I had managed to come through the other end of a horrible time. I had a new job, a rental home close to the kids’ school, and my parents had helped me get through. We made a wish that we could stay here and it came true.
But I had started a new job, with no vacation and no time to relax. So my parents took the kids to Nebraska for the entire summer, leaving me alone, vulnerable, and confused as to how to deal with being completely alone for the first time in 20 years. I had a desire to leave, jump in a car or on a motorcycle, hit the road, and disappear until it just didn’t hurt anymore. I couldn’t do that, so I disappeared for a weekend. In 2011, I went to LA on my Birthday. I drove along the beach, took my time, and tried to understand what happened and what it could all mean.
This year . . . I leave again. Same deal, no time off, kids in Nebraska, I’m on my own. I reconnected via phone with an amazing friend. I drove there on Interstate 5 and back along the Pacific Coast Highway. No timeline, no stops, just one event that I bought tickets for. I met people on the way, and drove to LA on my birthday. The difference this year? You get to come along and see how Our Story Begins.
Have you ever done a solo road trip? Where did you go and what did you learn about yourself?
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Dave Manoucheri is a writer and journalist based in Sacramento, California. He’s also a musician who writes and performs with his brother’s band: Manoucheri. A father of four, two daughters and twin sons, his blog, Our Story Begins is a chronicle of their daily life after the loss of his wife, Andrea, in March of 2011. Follow him on Twitter @InvProducerMan and check out on his Facebookpage too.