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Sweet as Honey

Guest columnist and Elementary Education major Tim Rupiper waxes poetic about those perfect summer moments

It’s 7 AM. The bags packed the night before wait restlessly by the door while you finish your morning coffee and watch as the world around you is blanketed with new light. You wash your mug in the sink, dry your hands and look to the street outside.

With your friends in tow, the door to the apartment will shut, the car engine will ignite to life and you’ll be off.

As an evergreen backdrop paints your drive, you barrel down the highway, occasionally pulling over to marvel at the vast beauty that is, simply, nature. Gaze upon it long enough and you become shockingly aware of just how microscopic you are in comparison to the trees, to the Earth and to the universe. Leave it to a tree or a mountain to put you in your place.

You continue on past the tar and glass, shortening the distance between you and your destination. Once or twice you stop at an oasis on the highway where people just like you, from all over, stop to stretch their legs, use the restroom, and do so in comfortable silence. The deafening roar of the highway calls you back.

You listen to your music, indulge in snacks, but something about driving long hours and far distances turns the playlist from the bops you and your friends bump, into the music that made you. It’s a calming background for the passing landscape.

Along the journey, you may stop at a friend’s house to spend the night on a makeshift bed; an old couch or blankets piled on the floor. You breathe, brush your teeth and get ready for the next day’s adventures. Excited to find things to add to the books of your life and the stories yet to tell.

The drive is exhausting—it tests your patience and the routes seem to blend into each other. Your wallet gasps for air and your body is exhausted. You long for some alone time. Your suitcase slowly eats away the clean clothes. The endless traveling is terrible but extremely rewarding and completely worth it.

Once you’re home and back to real life, the routines you had before will start up again. All that’s happened will become memories, a distant object in your rearview. These memories will help pass the days and keep you humble while you build anticipation for your next journey.

This is summer. A word dripping like honey from your lips each time it’s spoken. Its sweetness providing a canvas for the moments that last a lifetime.

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