Those words stayed with my father, and now, a year after my grandfather’s passing, they’ve been echoing in my head as well. In the summers of my childhood, I felt so lucky that I didn’t go to Disney World or the Bahamas like the rest of my schoolmates. Instead, my father and I packed up his car and went on road trips together. We toured all over Toronto, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Kentucky, Tennessee, and so many other adventures. When I would tell my classmates about those trips, they were always baffled as to why we drove when flying was so much faster. Because, I would tell them impatiently, you see so much more on the road. Stretches of highway through the middle of nowhere led us to some of my most treasured summer memories. Whenever we saw something interesting we’d pull over. We wandered through the Titanic museum, where, he still likes to remind me, I read through every single exhibit in full. We toured Stonewall Jackson’s house and explored forgotten Civil War era cemeteries, marveled as the Bay of Fundy drained and filled at sunrise, ate at diners and spent hours in the cool darkness of a mediocre planetarium to escape the summer heat of the South. But best of all were the people we met. The little old British lady who ran the Fogwitch Inn in Nova Scotia and proudly served us proper jam and tea for breakfast, the construction worker enjoying drinks with his buddies outside our motel in Kentucky who declared (in early July) “That August heat just about durn near kilt me”, the 90 year old mother and 70 year old daughter who made a pilgrimage to the Anne of Green Gables house every single year, and Sal and Denise, the old motorcycling couple with whom we enjoyed Fourth of July fireworks. I loved these encounters, because all of them seemed so special — how each of these characters serendipitously dropped into our day as we improvised our driving routes and left the rest to fate.