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  • Post-GONE: Day 4

    Posted on September 15th, 2011 tcorzett No comments

    The past few days I’ve been meaning to write things in this blog, but after 8 hours of driving I often forget what I was thinking of earlier. Today I figured it would be a smart thing to start taking notes of the day’s activities!

    The weather this morning was quite cool (mid-50’s), and the smell of real wood fires was very enjoyable. The overcast skies made the morning drive nice, as most mornings I’m stuck driving while looking into the sun. The first hour of driving was on the interstate, but it didn’t take too long to get out onto the backroads of Kentucky.

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    While much of today’s driving was on backroads, I never felt like I was really in the middle of nowhere (like I prefer). All along the roads from today were houses and farms, so I was consistently looking around at things. There were lots of old dilapidated barns and buildings… I’m sure my Mother would have wanted to stop every few minutes to take pictures.

    I also saw a new plant in the fields… tobacco. I didn’t know what it was at first, but after seeing several barns with large brown leaves hanging from the ceilings, I figured it out. I tried to find a barn to take a photo of, but none of the buildings had areas near the road where I could safely pull-off.

    After stopping to take some photos of old buildings, I mistakenly turned the wrong way. I saw that the GPS had added over an hour to my arrival time (why it didn’t just tell me to make a U-turn I will never know), so I knew I’d gone the wrong way. It took me a little while to find a place to turn around and to figure out where I’d made the wrong turn. After getting back on course I was feeling a little unmotivated, so when I reached Kentucky 60 I decided to shorten my route a little. Fortunately, most of the drives I’ve planned have “shortcuts” for when I’m not feeling like driving.

    My afternoon was plagued by P2135 codes in completely random and unrelated circumstances… I even got one while using cruise control! I think I had to clear the code a half-dozen times, each one requiring me to stop the car to clear-out “limp mode”. While I have been told there isn’t a chance of damaging the car, it is really annoying to be put into “limp mode” all the time.

    While on the road today I found the cousin of the driver I described yesterday… this one is known as the “I was going 5 mph under the speed limit on a two-lane road, but I’m now going 10 miles over because you passed me” guy. Not only is this guy annoying before you have to pass, he makes the drive after the pass feel like you’re being chased by an unhappy driver. To make things even worse, just after making the pass my car decided to throw a P2135 code again and I had to find a place to pull-off the road.

    While getting lost, sitting on the side of the road clearing codes, or getting a quick lunch from my trunk… I’ve started to meet all sorts of nice people. It seems like almost everyone in these small towns waves at everyone else, and many people gave me worried looks when I was stopped. Now, while there look to be lots of friendly people… I also got the feeling that the people in many of the houses would have shot at me if I had stopped.

    Despite the risk of shotgun blasts, I just had to stop and get a photo with a barn full of rolls of hay.

    While most of the driving wasn’t too exciting, the final section of today’s drive was truly EPIC!

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    The pavement on Kentucky 478 was super smooth, there was zero traffic, and the atmosphere was very unique. Unlike the Google Maps Street View, at this time of the year, the trees were full of green, yellow, orange, and red leaves. The road was covered with wet leaves and there were wisps of steam rising-up from the asphalt. The colors and everything just made for an awesome place to drive… the twists/turns just made it better.

    This section of road was tighter and more technical than what I’ve been driving for the past few days, and with the addition of the wet leaves I had to stay on my toes. While it would have been great to have dry pavement without leaves, having to tip-toe between the slippy spots made the drive even more fun.

    The only downside of this stretch of road was the dogs! There were two separate situations where I had to slam on my brakes because a dog came running out after my car. I felt really bad after the squirrel indecent yesterday, and didn’t want to take-out another critter. Fortunately I have great brakes and tires… but what’s the deal with dogs chasing cars!?!

    After driving on KY-478 I was feeling invigorated and was ready for another hour of driving, but when I looked at my map I just couldn’t figure out how it was going to take an hour to finish the drive… then I remembered I was in a new time zone!

    Today was another long day of driving, even with the “shortcut”. I really enjoyed the scenery and the epic finally. Tomorrow is scheduled for a shorter day of driving, which I’m really looking forward to. It’s not like I don’t enjoy driving, but 8 hours behind the wheel is a lot.