We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. Accept | Find out more

x

The Rules of the Road

The road trip is as much a voyage of self-discovery as it is a physical journey. The traveler need do no more than turn the key in the ignition, shift gears and head out into the great unknown ... pausing only to execute a six-point turn on a suburban dead-end street while mopping up lap-scalding coffee and shouting, “You’re the one with the map!” Alternatively, you could do a little prep. To this end, we gave our intrepid correspondent Sam Polcer a Corvette, a map of Route 1 (Massachusetts to Maine) and a mandate to write down all the things that make a road trip work.

Author SAM POLCER Photography SAM POLCER

RULE NO. 13: TAKE PICTURES

Every epic journey demands visual documentation, a rule exemplified by photographer Robert Frank’s road trip masterpiece, The Americans. Frank, however, was bankrolled by the Guggenheim Foundation; you are not. Luckily, Fuji’s latest entry into the prosumer interchangeable-lens digital camera market, the X-Pro1 (above, inset),provides a relatively cheap and supremely portable option. You can outfit the X-Pro1—which boasts a new high-resolution sensor—with three fixed-focal-length lenses, including an incredibly versatile 35mm f/1.4. And if your pictures don’t end up being museum-quality, you can always sit and admire the attractive retro styling of the camera itself. $1,699, fujifilm.com

- – - – -

RULE NO. 14: DRESS APPROPRIATELY

Those slim-fit jeans and T-shirts may have seemed like a good idea, but on a road trip they bind in all the wrong places—by which we mean around mile three of your journey. A rule of thumb: If you wouldn’t go to bed in it, don’t drive in it.

- – - – -

RULE NO. 15: STOP DOING THAT

Tapping on the steering wheel. Reading aloud every road sign you pass. Hollering “Cow!” every time you see a cow. Groaning theatrically every time you get out of the car. Asking every 10 minutes if we’ve passed Kennebunk yet. Picking your teeth with toll tickets …

- – - – -

RULE NO. 16: GO SHOPPING

The success of a road trip directly correlates with the weirdness of the stuff that you obtain along the way. Among our haul was a 1960s comic book titled The Secret House of Sinister Love, a cougar pendant fashioned from a seashell, and a fridge magnet bearing a dreadful illustration of a lobster pot. Priceless.

- – - – -

RULE NO. 17: CALL YOUR MOTHER

“Hi, Mom? We just pulled over to watch this beautiful sunset, and it made me think of you. Oh, and by the way, do you mind swinging by my place to check if I turned the AC off? Thanks! Bye!”

One Response to “The Rules of the Road”

  1. Abby Mundro Says:
    August 17th, 2012 at 10:05 am

    My mom sent me this article as I am about to take a trip from Pennsylvania to California with my friend and it was so perfect! Just what I needed. I’m leaving in two days! Great article

Leave your comments


*