My thousand miles

I’m in the lobby of the Thrifty Inn near the Nashville Airport. Last night we reached our first 1000 miles, crossed our first time zone and got our first (and possibly last) speeding ticket.

Alright, these things happen. I maintain they happen more easily if you have a New York license plate. The only times I’ve ever been pulled over by the police (well, not I specifically, as I was never at the wheel, considering the first two times I was 13) I had a New York license plate.

I think I was slightly too nervous yesterday. I get that way any time I drive far enough from the coast. It’s a kind of anxiety the inner United States tends to give me, and I’m not sure it’s completely unmotivated. But yesterday I was also going to see my future American publisher, somewhere in the mountains of North Carolina. It was not my lateness that made me nervous. Lateness is explainable and excusable, so it wasn’t that. It was the idea itself that I was going to see people I had been in touch with for a few months, with whom I would (will) get into a business agreement, who would (will) expect me to produce, deliver, be good at what I do.

Not that other people don’t expect that from me. But for some reason gave me a bigger kick. And as I could not just get out of the car and scream or go for a run (or a swim), I just felt nervous. After Jefferson, all the way to Nashville, I just felt relieved and happy. Even after our dinner at Grandslam Pizza and Wings somewhere in Tennessee – a place we chose because of its advertised free wi-fi, and which wasn’t bad, just not a place where you’d expect to see two random tourists.

(I won’t get into the issue of whether or not we are tourists.)