Winding Oak's Bookology Magazine

Writing Road Trip

Lisa Bullard

Time Travel

When you tour Rome, you’re not always sure if you’re trav­el­ing in taxis or time machines. Down one street, you’re trans­port­ed back to around 2,000 years ago, watch­ing the Chris­tians take on the lions in the Forum. Head down anoth­er street, and you’re enrap­tured by one of Michelangelo’s Renais­sance mas­ter­pieces. Turn your head, and you see—the […]

Lisa Bullard

Roads Not Taken

My brother’s dri­ving direc­tions are full of “roads not tak­en.” He’ll say some­thing like, “Go about a mile and you’ll see Hamil­ton. Don’t turn there! You want the next street.” But with­out fail, I see Hamil­ton, remem­ber that it was part of his direc­tions, and turn before I’m sup­posed to. My father and I are […]

Lisa Bullard

Misdirected

Sev­er­al years ago a friend and I got lost dri­ving through New Orleans. Even­tu­al­ly we pulled over so I could ask a gas sta­tion atten­dant for direc­tions. He rat­tled off a set of instruc­tions in a Cajun accent, end­ing with, “then take the Hoopa­long.” I looked at my road map. No Hoopa­long. I asked him to […]

Road Food Re-Mix

Road Food Re-Mix

by Lisa Bullard I love seek­ing out odd­ball road food oppor­tu­ni­ties. In New Jer­sey: a Chi­­­nese-Ital­ian buf­fet where the spaghet­ti and lo mein rubbed shoul­ders like long-lost cousins. In Nashville: a Swedish-South­ern all-you-can-eat spread, with fried chick­en and pick­led her­ring vying for att‚ention. In New York City: a Greek-Mex­i­­­can café. Many of the world’s diverse taste […]

Return Visit

Return Visit

by Lisa Bullard San Fran­cis­co has an eerie qual­i­ty of rein­ven­tion that is unique to that city for me. When I make return vis­its to oth­er des­ti­na­tions, the visu­al “pieces” from each trip start to fit togeth­er like giant jig­saw puz­zles, and even­tu­al­ly I form an inte­grat­ed pic­ture of the whole place. But despite the […]

Lisa Bullard

Well-Traveled Paths

by Lisa Bullard I slip into auto-pilot when I’m dri­ving through over­ly famil­iar ter­ri­to­ry; I stop tak­ing in the same old land­marks. And then one day, there’s a stop sign where there’s nev­er been one before, and my eyes are re-opened to the pos­si­bil­i­ties around me. There are “sto­ry paths” like that too: fairy tales […]

Biker

Pilgrimage

by Lisa Bullard Every year, thou­sands of bik­ers road trip to Stur­gis (South Dako­ta) to cel­e­brate their shared pas­sion for motor­cy­cles. For some of them, atten­dance is an eager­ly antic­i­pat­ed annu­al tra­di­tion that holds the same pow­er found in spir­i­tu­al rit­u­als. One year my friend and I were caught unawares in the mid­dle of the […]

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Through the Woods

by Lisa Bullard A few years ago I decid­ed to vis­it a friend in North Car­oli­na over the hol­i­days, and the only way I could afford the air­fare was to fly on Christ­mas Day. I admit to a case of self pity as I set out, pic­tur­ing the rest of the world in their new paja­mas, open­ing […]

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Crossing the Border

by Lisa Bullard Once when flying back to the U.S. from Cana­da I met up with some zeal­ous bor­der con­trol agents. The cus­toms guy want­ed a detailed descrip­tion of what I’d pur­chased. “I bought one of those sou­venir snow globes with a lit­tle Moun­tie inside,” I said. The guy thought a moment and then sad­ly […]

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Packing List

by Lisa Bullard I gen­er­ate a flur­ry of lists for every road trip: A “bizarre attrac­tions to stop and see” list. A “things to tell the cat-sit­ter” list. A pack­ing list. I love lists. I love them so much I have a whole jour­nal full of dif­fer­ent sorts of lists—I write down every­thing from house­hold […]

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Winter Roads

by Lisa Bullard Win­ters add the ele­ment of sur­prise to the Min­neso­ta dri­ving equa­tion. Mid-jour­ney, you can be sucked into one of the car-devour­ing pot­holes caused by my state’s rad­i­cal tem­per­a­ture changes. Or you can skid on a decep­tive slick of black ice, and end up strad­dling a snow bank. In those moments, you real­ize […]

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Home Away from Home

by Lisa Bullard I like to play a cer­tain game when I’m trav­el­ing. I pre­tend that the place I’m vis­it­ing is my home, and I imag­ine how my life would have been altered if I had in fact tak­en root in that oth­er envi­ron­ment. How would things be dif­fer­ent for me if my world swirled […]

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Plotting Your Route

by Lisa Bullard Using an “I’ll just see where the road takes me” approach has led me on all sorts of adven­tures. But it’s also meant I’ve arrived at mid­night and dis­cov­ered every hotel room in town is rent­ed to lum­ber­jacks. I still don’t plan ahead for lum­ber­jack influxes—I figure one of those per life­time is […]

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Round Trip

by Lisa Bullard One of life’s great sat­is­fac­tions is return­ing home after a long jour­ney. We rejoice in the famil­iar clasp of our own bed, in the brac­ing taste of our home air. Every­thing seems com­fort­ing­ly the same, yet also fresh and remark­able. This is because, even if home has stayed the same, jour­ney­ing has […]

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East, or West?

by Lisa Bullard I think road-trip­ping togeth­er should be a require­ment for every cou­ple con­tem­plat­ing life part­ner­ship. There are few oth­er cir­cum­stances that allow you to so quick­ly learn about how some­one nav­i­gates through life. Would you rather plan the whole trip in advance, or just get in the car and dri­ve? Do you stop […]