Cross country : fifteen years and ninety thousand miles on the roads and interstates of America with Lewis and Clark, a lot of bad motels, a moving van, Emily Post, Jack Kerouac, my wife, my mother-in law, two kids, and enough coffee to kill an elephant
Robert Sullivan, who has driven cross-country more than two dozen times, recounts one of his family's many journeys from Oregon to New York. His story of moving his family back and forth from the East Coast to the West Coast (along with various other migrations), is replete with all the minor disasters, humor, and wonderful coincidences that characterize life on the road, not to mention life. As he drives, Sullivan ponders his Lewis and Clark and other fellow nation-crossers, meets Beat poets who are devotees of cross-country icon Jack Kerouac, and plays golf on an abandoned coal mine. And, in his trademark celebration of the mundane, Sullivan investigates everything from the history of the gas pump to the origins of fast food and rest stops. Cross Country tells the tales that come from fifteen years of driving across the country (and all around it) with two kids and everything that two kids and two parents take when driving in a car from one coast to another, over and over, driving to see the way the road made America and America made the road.