Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Shellie is driving and we are lamenting. What else should two southern girls be doing while they are riding a thousand miles.

THIS IS our OFFICIAL WOULDA, SHOULDA, COULDA list but this does not mean that we are signing off on it permanently. It has been a growing nest of despair as each day had ticked by with the delightful feeilng of getting closer to the finish line and yet . . .

At the same time there is this horrible sense of loss, of mighthavebeens, and if only's knocking at our door.

It started with the fact that we had both looked forward to SEEING ROCK CITY like 4th graders on a spring break bus trip. We longed for statues of dwarfs without reason, photo ops at the Ruby Falls, a quick peek at Lover's Leap (not a good way to express your love we might add) and collecting some great items to bring home to family and friends like little birdhouses that say so poetically - SEE ROCK CITY.

We passed up Tallulah Falls, Gorge Overlooks, little restaurants by the water with cafe tables and umbrelleas. We have missed F. Scott Figerald's House, The little House of the Poet of Tolstoy Park, The Blue Angels Air Show (kinda), The graves of the famous and the dead unknowns (and by the way - I'm using that for a book somewhere). We have longed to wander under magnolia trees drapped with moss and pick our way through tombstones with stories. All for naught our wanting.

Our wandering has not led us down any of the paths here that we would have chosen or included on this trip, our little passport to paradise of things we wanted to see has not been punched. However and so on - -
We have made incredible friends along the way and then stayed up till three posting, cutting and editing those interviews so that those of you who couldn't be with us - somehow still were with us. Yes, we missed discovering Dauphin island on bikes or meandering down precious sidewalks in Fairhope. We have drug (past tense of drag) around cards to mail from our families from the beginning of this trip but there hasn't even been time to find aPost Office.

What we have found is the inside of bookstores across six states and dipping into seven. What we have found are stories that have been waiting for us to show up and pluck them. What we have found everywhere we've pulled up,  set up our radio eqiupment and opened up a book is YOU reader, behind the door or behind the page.

I guess our woulda- shoulda - coulda list just disappeared into thin air. We''ve been right where we were supposed to be all along.

On the road to Jackson, MS. And coming in on a Wing and a Prayer (and a shoestring!)

River and Shellie


  1. The road goes on forever and the party never ends... the sun keeps on rising and setting and in and out go your friends. Tomorrow is another chance at something new to be wasted or refreshed. Everything you've done thus far, it's something I'm sure you've cherished. Rock City will surely be there, although it's signs they fade away. You can always say you'll do it again tomorrow, next week, cause certainly you'll get there...someday.

    It's not at all as it was are nearly as it seems. Some of it is solid, some of it a dream. Some of it like a flash of light, like lightening in the sky. Some of it you get to keep, you'll see those parts as they travel your minds eye. One day you'll be reminded of something you'd forgot. Or maybe something dreamed. Things about this journey, the long hours in that Jeep, that food down at that diner, the long hours and lack of sleep. It's all a part of you now, something you can keep. But there's good news that comes with lifes experiances and a with writers skill. Those experiances, althought they will always be yours as percious as they feel, you can give away what you want to every one you meet.

    See, the road goes on forever and ever, and the party never ends. Cause when one book is finished a new chapter just begins.

  2. What can I say.. Al summed it all up....Beautiful piece!

  3. What can I say, Al summed it all up!! Wonderful piece..Keep on rolling with the flow.. ;)

  4. Now I ask you.. Why is it when I write a comment and post it the first time it does not show up?? When I post again both comments show..Help me Jesus.. Show me the way... :~)