Road Trip Detours

I don’t know about you, but when taking a road trip, I occasionally end up detouring. Sometimes the detour is forced because of construction, inclement weather, or a bad accident. Other times, a wrong turn or taking the wrong exit off a highway causes the detour. There are times a detour is intentional. I need to use a bathroom, find a safe place to rest or the place by which I am driving looks inviting and interesting, and I am not in a hurry.
Whatever the reason, depending on the weather, the time of day, and location, detours offer opportunities for exploring. There is always something new to experience or to see something old presented differently.
Without exception, people in small towns and rural communities capture my interest. My presence captivates their attention. People stare shyly at me; children usually do so openly. Most teens and young adults make eye contact and politely greet me, or they completely ignore me. Eventually, if I’m there long enough, I exchange greetings with an older person who usually asks one of three questions. “What you doing in these parts?” “Where you from?” “Where you headed.”
I answer the question, and a conversation ensues. Either the person with whom I’m speaking or a passerby recommends a local place for me to eat and points out a venue of which they are particularly proud, or one the person thinks I will find meaningful.
I thank them, and when time permits, I follow their recommendations. Wherever I end up eating, the establishment serves a heaping large enough to feed two or three people. Typically, the food is terrible, but the service is great.
When a detour becomes more than a brief departure from the planned course and turns into a day trip or a weekend getaway, I leave with a meaningful and memorable experience.
Thank God for road trips and for some detours!

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