Road of Life

East on 21 to Madisonville. North on 45 to Dallas. West on Parker. South on Mission Ridge. West on Big Horn. Every time. Close to once a month for my four years of college. I know the way home from college like the back of my hand. All the way back I am looking forward to getting home and have some time with my family and some good home cooking. I usually have an additional reason for making the trip back, but that is just the excuse I use to get home. I love going home. The path has become so familiar to me that I even know which cities to slow down in and which intersections are more likely to have state troopers or local police that want to meet their quota of tickets and target college students on their way home. Sometimes it is a sense of pride to see one of the usual spots up and coming and slow down to exact speed limit and then pass a cop that wanted to nail me. I get a huge sense of relief when that happens, when I am attentive to my surroundings and know the likely place that I will get caught. But sometimes I get lazy. Sometimes I just zone out, turn up my music and put my trip on autopilot. I just hit the cruise control on my car and in my mind and just get there. But the two times that I have been pulled over have been when I was zoned out and not really paying attention to where I was and how I was driving. If I had paid attention to my surroundings and my driving I would have easily avoided those situations. I think the same is true in the roads that this life leads us down. There are certain things that I know are obvious traps and that if I am there I will get nailed and caught. Times of the day, certain locations, and specific situations that if they all align I going to get myself a ticket of sin. But if I am paying attention and alert to my situations and careful with how I am living I am a lot less likely to mess up. But it is the times when I become zoned out with life and tune out the big picture that I become apathetic and fall into the places that I know are not places that I need to be. No matter how many times I drive these roads, the same traps and pitfalls are there. The trick is to learn from the times when I have slipped and learn to be alert at all times.