A Personal Story Part I
Before I get into my road trip from Boston to San Diego, let me introduce myself.
My name is Robby McKittrick, and I recently graduated from Lafayette College in Pennsylvania. I was a psychology major and philosophy minor, but my dream and goal is to be a full-time sports journalist or sports broadcaster.
So how did I wind up in San Diego?
The summer before my senior year of college, I was thinking about what I wanted to do after I graduated.
I could join the “real world” on the east coast and take whatever nine to five job a liberal arts major could find, or I could travel and work in a different part of the country.
I love the Boston area, but I wanted to experience a place, drastically different from the east coast.
How did I pick San Diego?
Obviously, I knew about the San Diego Zoo from the movie Anchorman.
But besides that, the warm weather, the pristine beaches, the southwestern vibe, and outdoor hiking opportunities were of course a draw.
Once my friend and I chose San Diego, we decided to take a road trip to get here. We picked the southern route, traveling through Nashville, Montgomery, New Orleans, Austin, the Grand Canyon, and many other places memorable cities along the way.
For anyone that has ever traveled to a different part of the country, you know what it feels like to step into a different culture for the first time.
People often use the term “culture shock” to describe this phenomenon.
However, culture shock is often thought of in a negative sense.
What I mean by culture shock is that feeling of excitement and amazement over the different types of people, geography, architecture, food, and culture. That feeling of “I can’t believe I am here.”
It’s one of the many reasons why I love traveling.
One of the first times I felt this sense of awe on our road trip was when we stopped in Montgomery, Alabama.
In Montgomery, we went inside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s old home. The tour guide described the Reverend King’s family life and the many death threats that he received every single day in his home.
We also visited the spot where Rosa Parks refused to sit on the back of the Montgomery bus. As we walked along the streets, I noticed the diverse groups of people with their strong southern accents.
Another instance was in Alamosa, Colorado at Great Sand Dunes National Park.
Imagine entering the Sahara Desert, while also being surrounded by a bowl of Rocky Mountains.
This is the scenery at Great Sand Dunes National Park.
At the peak of the park, you have a full 180-degree view of the Rocky Mountains, as well as the Sahara-like sand pyramids in the background. While you stand on top of the pyramids, sand gusts blow into your face reminding you once again of a desert.
There were many other places along my journey that were quite different as well. Whether it be the honky-tonk bars in Austin, Texas or hiking down into the Grand Canyon. Each place we visited was interesting for its own unique reason.
When I finally landed in San Diego after a month on the road, I knew that I had picked the right place.
The palm trees, the Mexican influence, and the immediate beach atmosphere jumped out at me right away.
I am excited to begin my adventure in San Diego and to be writing for the Clairemont Times.