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Kansas City MO 64131





Cindy Maddera

Yes Chad, I meant bored not board. The other morning I was walking outside when I had a very clear vision. In the vision, I was riding my scooter down a back country road. There were saddle bags bulging at the sides of the scooter while I sported a hiker's kind of backpack on my back. Josephine's head stuck out the top of the pack and we were just traveling along the open road. It was such a clear vision that I started to wonder if it was actually possible. The idea of traveling across the US on the scooter seems very inviting. I would stop and photograph forgotten towns and abandoned road side attractions and camp out in yurts and teepees. Then I'd write a book about my adventures that would end up on the best seller list. The book would be so popular that it would made into a movie. Amy Poehler would play me in the movie; soundtrack by Neko Case.

I've done some math/calculations/guessing and I've figured out that I would need to take about a two year sabbatical from work in order to travel across the U.S. and write a book. This would give me six months or so to travel from one side of the country to the other and then back to the middle. It would look something like this.

Except it probably would not be so straight, particularly through that section between Charlotte and Boston because the scooter is not an amphibian scooter. At least I don't think it is. Also, the last time I went to New York, I flew from KCMO to Minneapolis and then to New York. I had never flown across Lake Michigan and somewhere in the middle I reached under my seat to be sure the life vest was still there. So I won't be barging the scooter across that lake. I feel that six months, give or take, is plenty of time for me explore the the winding roads of America. There's a lot of the North East I've never seen like Philadelphia, Boston, Pittsburgh. I've never been to Montana or Idaho either. I could focus on the parts I haven't seen and zoom past the ones I have seen like that giant Ketchup bottle in Illinois. 

I figure I would need the rest of that time to write the book. I'd have to finish writing in at least a year so I could send it away to be edited by people who know how to edit. I feel that if it was my job to write the book, I'd actually write the dang book. The whole trip would make it so the book practically writes itself any way. There'd be pictures and probably a few lessons learned segments. I already envision a part where I try to change the back tire on my scooter. You have to remove the whole exhaust to get to that tire. I'm sure there would be a whole chapter of conversations with strangers. I'm a magnet for eccentric oddballs. It's like a bizarro superpower. I could also do on a whole chapter on food. A vegetarian in Montana. That's almost a book on it's own. 

It's all a pipe dream though, one to put on the list for when I retire. My work is great, but I don't think they'd agree to giving me two years off to go riding around on my scooter. Specially with pay. I'm also not so sure Michael would be all that cool with me taking a solo trip away for six months. I'm not so sure Josephine would be into riding on my back in backpack either. There's to much of a sense of responsibility in me to just drop this stable life for a vagabond life. There would be six months of my life where I wouldn't know what I was having for breakfast every day. Meal plans wouldn't exist. I would not be able to rely on a detailed schedule. The whole excursion would take me so far out of my comfort zone that I'd either adapt or turn right around and come home. Most likely I'd adapt because I'd be too stubborn to call it quits, but it's still a dream.

A freaking awesome dream.