What better way to celebrate your independence than to get away from it all in a stylish Airstream Safair? This is vintage Americana at its best — AND you’ll be staying in Big Sur, no less. What’s more classic, more ruggedly American, more hippie chic than that?
Last night, my husband and I had the amazing good fortune (and foresight of planning on our cross-country road trip) to celebrate Frank Lloyd Wright’s birthday at his masterpiece, Fallingwater. The brilliance of our planning is completely overshadowed, not only by the place, but by the shear genius of the Opera Theater of Pittsburgh in producing an opera about Mr. Wright, and staging it at Fallingwater, on the day of his birthday!
Sometimes the best part of a road trip is in the planning. You research and read and Google – you time out the distances on a map – you find the closest hotels, the most interesting side trips. And then you pack up the car and head out.
In our case, we packed up the suitcases and headed to the airport for the second leg of our progressive road trip. Our car (we hoped) was still parked at the Baltimore airport, where we’d left it five weeks ago. This time, we’re picking up where we left off and setting off for Chicago, more or less, with lots of interesting stops along the way.
Today I received an email from the folks at the visitor center at Monticello, the iconic home of US President Thomas Jefferson. (And by the way, yes, this is the first time I’ve ever written a sentence with both “Thomas Jefferson” and “email” in it.)
I love Monticello – it’s almost a spiritual place for me – partly because my father felt a deep connection to Jefferson’s works and words, and partly because my first visit there was in the middle of winter, as the sun was going down. I was the only person on the tour. The house was filled with long, golden shadows and was intensely quiet. I traveled back in time for a few moments, connecting to the place and the man and my late father all at the same time.
Probably NOT the Best Car for a Looooong Road Trip – We’re Actually Using our Small SUV
So my husband and I have decided to do a “progressive” road trip this year, with stops in as many US states as we can manage. We call it a progressive trip, because we’re doing it in stages – even leaving our small SUV parked in an airport satellite lot for a month while we manage some things back home, then we’ll fly back and start the next leg. (No, we’re not using that teensy thing in the photo, but it is cute!)
Our goal is to see America in style — but that can mean many different things. Style is so dependent on its surroundings. (Imagine that cute South Beach bikini in a grocery store in Manhattan for instance.)
Here are my tips on how to plan your own stylish, progressive road trip: