When all is said and done

Now that we are home, we have had some time to reflect on our favorite (and not so favorite) moments, places etc. of our 22 day journey across 22 states (+ 1 district), from ocean to ocean, through 40+ degree heat.

  1. Most disliked camping chore
    Ray: Manually inflating the airbed
    Alyssa: Dishes (in the dark, while bugs are eating my legs)
  2. Best road trip song
    Ray: Maroon 5/Christina Aguilara  – “Moves Like Jagger”
    Alyssa: Jason Alden – “Dirt Road Anthem”
  3. Best campsite
    Ray: Stone Mountain (East of Atlanta)
    Alyssa: Cloudland Canyon (Northwest of Atlanta)
  4. Best museum
    Ray & Alyssa:  Smithsonian Air & Space Museums (on the mall and at the airport)
  5. Best body of water
    Ray & Alyssa:  Atlantic Ocean
  6. Best national monument
    Ray & Alyssa:  Crazy Horse memorial (South Dakota) and Tomb of the Unknown Soldier (Arlington)
  7. Best Food/Restaurant
    Ray:  Red, Hot and Blue – Ribs (Arlington, VA)
    Alyssa:  Red, Hot and Blue – Onion Loaf (Arlington, VA)
  8. Best unplanned detour
    Ray:  Louisville Slugger Factory (Kentucky)
    Alyssa:  Badlands National Park (South Dakota)
  9. Best national park
    Ray & Alyssa:  Yellowstone
    note: Custer State Park was by far our favorite, but not a national park
  10. City I would have skipped
    Ray & Alyssa: Omaha, Nebraska
  11. City/State I can’t wait to return to
    Ray: Washington DC
    Alyssa: Outer Banks, Kentucky, DC
  12. Best geographic wonder
    Ray: Devil’s Tower, Wyoming
    Alyssa: Badlands, South Dakota
  13. Best animal siting
    Ray:  Bison in Custer (though Kate’s uncle’s Kitten runs a close second)
    Alyssa: Bison Bison Bison in Custer
  14. Been there, done that
    Ray:  Atlanta
    Alyssa: Chicago
  15. Best/most scenic driving state
    Ray & Alyssa: Kentucky
  16. Worse/least scenic driving state
    Ray: Nebraska
    Alyssa: Nebraska (though the tolling roads of Indiana and Illinois come close)
  17. Most missed comfort of home
    Ray: Hubble
    Alyssa: Everything having a place
  18. Best Piece of Americana
    Ray & Alyssa: Baseball Games
  19. Best Tour
    Ray & Alyssa: Behind the Scenes at the Georgia Aquarium
  20. Most Overrated
    Ray: Mississippi riverboat tour
    Alyssa:  Country Music Hall of Fame, Chicago, Mississippi riverboat tour
  21. Most Underrated
    Ray: Belle Fourche 4th of July Parade
    Alyssa: National Archives, Devil’s Tower, Badlands
  22. Best Baseball Game
    Ray & Alyssa: Cleveland Indians vs. Toronto Blue Jays
  23. Top 3 overall experiences
    Ray: Bison in Custer, Last Inning of the Cleveland/Blue Jays Game, Running 10K in South Dakota on the 4th of July
    Alyssa: Hiking Dunes/Playing in Waves in North Carolina, Bison in Custer, Changing of the Guard at Arlington Cemetery
  24. Honorable mentions
    – All things Yellowstone
    – Holocaust Museum in DC
    – Capitol Building, National Archives, Star-spangled banner
    – Martin Luther King Jr Memorial
    – Seeing the space shuttle/jets/planes
    – whale sharks
  25. In a category of its own
    There isn’t an  appropriate category to talk about how AMAZING our experience was in South Dakota with Kate’s family.  These are some of the warmest, kindest most generous people we have ever met.  Our time in South Dakota with them surpasses all our “tops” because it was so beautiful and wonderful and rich.  They are the richest meaning of the word “hospitality” and we had an amazing time.  The 4th of July parade, fireworks, time at Iron Creek Lake, playing games, taking photos, and amazing conversations.  Thank you thank you THANK YOU for bringing so many wonderful things to our trip!
  26. We couldn’t have done it without…
    – Samantha (our GPS)
    – Gertie (our Car)
    – Andre (the mechanic who fixed Gertie)
    – Red Bull
    – McDonalds (free wifi and clean bathrooms)
    – Mitch Hedberg
    – Rock of Ages Soundtrack
    – Air Conditioning
    – Luke (for this AMAZING website!!!!!)
    – Sarah and Andrea (for caring for Hubble)
    – Kate and her entire family

One thought on “When all is said and done

  1. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! for sharing this experience with us. So much fun to follow. Thank you, also, to Luke for making me aware of his project for you.

    Like

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