Six and a half years ago I did something impulsive.

I got in the car with my best childhood friend and took off on an adventure, and that very adventure has defined every moment of my life since. Two years ago I sat down wanting to write, and, feeling a bit nostalgic for my friend and for that sweet period of my life, I began to write about that story. After two years of hard work, a rigorous editing process, a lot of research and investigation about the publishing industry, endless cover mock ups and hours on the phone with my friend going over details of our memories, I now have a completed book, which will be published this weekend.

I am going to do a series of posts which will include excerpts and actual photos from the adventure over the next month, and hopefully something will catch your interest in my story and inspire you to read it.

Today, I’ll share a picture from the day we left Washington State.

We drove south with our empty plastic Starbucks cups resting on the dashboard. The hot air stuck to my skin, and savage excitement filled the car. We had changed into our bikini tops in a gas station bathroom. I had my legs thrown up against the car door, and we made accidental eye contact with the wide-eyed men in the pickup trucks next to us after we noticed that they were matching our speed to get a better look at us. What was going to happen? What would we find during the next month? Would we find ourselves? Each other? I watched the evergreen trees fly past as we plunged into the unknown, trying to decide if what I felt was nervous excitement or sheer terror.