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There and Back Again: Day One of Adventure on the Road

In the spirit of a hobbit embarking on an unexpected journey, my day one on the road started with a heart full of adventure and a destination in mind - Nashville, Tennessee, all the way from Charlotte, North Carolina. Like Bilbo Baggins leaving the Shire, I too stepped out of my comfort zone, eager for the stories that lay ahead. The day before, in preparation, I paid a visit to Meineke, ensuring my car was as ready for the journey as I was. An extra oil change and two new tires later, I felt like a knight readying their steed for a long quest.


Armed with the knowledge that I could gallivant across Tennessee, Missouri, Kansas, Illinois, and Arkansas as a Lyft driver, I turned to my magical guide, ChatGPT. This digital wizard crafted for me a seven-day epic, charting a course from Charlotte to Oxnard, California. My path was meticulously planned to meander through cities where I could ply my trade, each day's journey not exceeding eight hours, akin to a hobbit's preference for leisurely travel.


Packing for this adventure required strategic thinking. I chose a car trunk tote with three compartments, packing clothes suitable for all seasons. This approach was not just practical but also a clever way to blend in and avoid drawing attention to my journey.


The dawn of my journey was not without its dragon to slay - a missed Crohn's disease infusion. The nurse, a gatekeeper of sorts, begrudgingly let me pass, ensuring I not end up in a painful flare during my trip.


My first stops were a mix of the mundane and the essential - a mysterious visit to a gun range, a quick refuel at a gas station, and a delightful stop at Chick-fil-A. With a few photographs to commemorate the start, I was officially on the road.


My initial destination, Asheville, NC, was just a couple of hours away. I managed a quick Lyft ride there, embracing the spirit of a traveler exploring new territories. Along the way, I stumbled upon Buc-ee's gas station, a place that left me marveling at its uniqueness.


Nashville welcomed me under the cloak of night. The quest for a night's rest turned into a saga of its own, with each hotel review reading like a grim fairy tale. So, in true hobbit fashion, I made my car my temporary burrow, nestling in Walmart's parking lot.

My car mattress: https://amzn.to/3MBLfld Car window shades: https://amzn.to/46aXBrd


The next morning brought a fresh start. A visit to Planet Fitness provided a much-needed chance to refresh and change. Though I skipped a workout, I felt ready to take on the day's new experiences.


Driving for Lyft that morning gave me a chance to get to know Nashville's streets and its people.


Each passenger added to my journey, sharing local insights and suggestions. I missed the opportunity to visit the recommended Silver Sands Cafe which is Black owned, but my time in Nashville was still enriching.


After earning $103 and enjoying a satisfying meal at Pancake Pantry, I caught up with my best friend (Samwise) over the phone.

Then, with a few hours more of driving under my belt, I set off towards my next destination - Saint Louis. The road ahead promised new experiences and adventures, and I was ready to embrace them all.


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