As a 19-year-old in 1978, Steve struck out from Seattle, Washington, heading south on a hitchhiking journey that eventually took him to Key West, Florida, and back. He rides with a gangster, a mortician, a young Idaho farmer, an amazing variety of people, who carry him not only across seven thousand miles but across a vast ocean of personal growth that dwarfs the physical journey.
Along the way, he finds characters — quirky, generous, dangerous, kind, sometimes destructive — who help him along his way and hold him back.
Mostly, he finds what he set out looking for, a sense of how he fits in the universe and a sense of gratitude even for small gifts in ugly packages.
The writing is transparent, and the people who give him rides along the way come through as clearly as if I were sitting in the car with them.
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to take off and find what the road holds, as I do sometimes, this is a book that will show you what that life could be like. More than that, though, it shows what a thoughtful and open-hearted young man can learn from such an extraordinary journey.
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