[Cloud USA] Road Trip for Rain: On the hunt for KPop and Jung JiHoon.

Written by: Stephe Thornton, Managing Editor ^@@^

(Image courtesy of CNBC.com)

PART 1: Going, going, gone. October 21 & 22.

{*Please note: Highway images are credited to their respective sources and are representative of the sights we saw. There were very few places to safely stop and take pictures, and we were in a time crunch with a long way to go!}

Off like a shot. When Terri and the Cloudmobile pulled up outside my house… there was hardly a cloud in the sky. It was a gorgeous Friday morning, full of promise, as we grabbed a portable breakfast and hit the road out of Atlanta as if we were on fire. Being fans on the way to our very first KPop concert, SMTown Live in NYC, I think that description—on fire—was most appropriate. We had clothing for five days, our equipment, our tickets, accomodations waiting for us when we hit the Big Apple, and our mission—to find KPop and Rain during our merry jaunt.

Who wouldn’t be excited as all get-out?

We left a little later than we’d planned to, and that turned out to be a plus. The Traffic Gods were kind to us and we were able to fly the coup without any trouble at all. Before we knew it, we were at the Georgia/South Carolina line, taking in the splendor of Lake Hartwell, and bookin’ on, with Gayle Terri driving, Oprah me navigating, and Rain singing up a storm. (I want you all to know that I LOVE Terri’s iPod. I have considered marrying it.)

(Image courtesy of UStraveldestinations.com)

As you all know, the Traffic Gods liking you in one place doesn’t necessarily mean they will let you slide in another. While in North Carolina, Terri’s GPS blared a warning about “congestion reported ahead” and before we knew it we were creeping along in some strange, non-rush hour lock down. What saved our sanity? Why, a trusty CloudUSAer, of course, by the name of MDWomack! It would have been great to meet our dear Dasiey, who lived in that state, but unfortunately our schedules clashed. Still, she chatted us up on the phone, made us laugh, gave us advice about the area we were traveling through, and kept us distracted enough to where no motorists were harmed by our severe aversion to bumper-to-bumper tangles.

“Whatever you do, don’t speed when you get into Virginia,” she said. Once we got into that state, we immediately saw why she’d mentioned that—a myriad of highway signs that warned SPEED DETECTED BY AIRCRAFT. *glancing up the whole way* O_____________O

The scenery that first day was as beautiful as we expected it to be, no matter where we were. The highway wound like a gray ribbon between the magnificent trees in Georgia, between fruit orchards and corporate home offices and mountains in the Carolinas, between rolling hills, patchwork farms with cattle, high mountains and deep valleys in Virginia. Boredom wasn’t a factor, and we made it all the way to Hagerstown, Maryland before stopping for the night.

(Image courtesy of DairyofDistinction.org)

Rain showed up… but not the rain we wanted. Showers spotted the Cloudmobile’s windshield as we crossed over into Pennsylvania the next morning. The entire day stayed gray and overcast, in fact… but somehow that didn’t ruin the scenery at all. Don’t know why. The Penn State was beautiful pastureland, cornfields, farmhouses and corrals with some homes having two to five grain silos a piece, surrounded by foothills. (Sort of reminded me of those apocalyptic movies where the doomsday rockets were launched in bunches towards Russian from unassuming silos across America. Yikes!)

The times our brains short-circuited. Scenario #1:
Stephe (looking up into the sky, enthralled): “Bird…”
Terri: “Yes, that’s a hawk, Stephe.”
Stephe (with the wide eyes of a 3-year-old): “Bird…!”
Terri looks at Stephe like this: O__o

Scenario #2:
Terri (as a HUGE highway sign comes even with the car): “Alien Road!”
Stephe (staring at her as if she is an alien): “A-L-L-E-N. Allen Road.”
Terri (sort of slow): “Oh. Yeah. Allen Road.”
Stephe looks at Terri like this: O__o

One thing I vividly remember about the stretch from there on into New Jersey was the amount of roadkill. I mean, we have plenty of small woodland creature-kill in the Dirty South, believe me, but we were beaten by a mile on that leg of the trip and this roadkill was BIG. Anywhere between Great Dane- and cattle-sized a pop, and most of the time completely obliterated so that you had no clue what it had been. I can only imagine what the cars were left looking like! (Did not take pictures of any.)

Jersey was sprawling, homey, tree-lined, very industrial, and pretty exciting because you knew New York was just over the hump from it. And then, there it was…

(Image courtesy of the Weary Wanderer blog)

Paydirt! And within a half-hour of check-in time at the Hotel Chandler, as well. Nice! We sped toward the Lincoln Tunnel with Terri driving her butt off and me navigating my ass off, our very survival in the suddenly heavy, fast-moving traffic at stake.

Stick with us, dear fans. More to come from your own “Oprah” and “Gayle”!

— Stephe @cloudusa.wordpress.com / CloudUSA.org

Where O where did we run into this awesome goodness? Stick around and find out! (Image: Cloud USA)

The MSG stage, right before it exploded with the hottest KPop in the world! (Image: Cloud USA)

~ by Cloud USA on October 30, 2011.

17 Responses to “[Cloud USA] Road Trip for Rain: On the hunt for KPop and Jung JiHoon.”

  1. OPRAH & GAYLE or is it THELMA & LOUISE? Either way I’m sure you two had rip roaring good time! (SMILES)


    • ROFL! Naw, we weren’t looking for any canyon cliffs to drive off of… I would’ve dove out of the doggone car, that’s for sure LOL

      Stephe ^@@^


    • LOL,

      We did, BiA. We had a great time. Didn’t even kill each other during the 30+ hour drive either.

      Of course the Rain music could have been the deciding factor. As long as Rain was playing, we were pretty content. And of course, the scenery always gets me. :-}

      Terri :-}


  2. Thanks for sharing ladies. You might not have noticed but I was in the back seat of the Cloudmobile with you all along 🙂
    When Stephe said over on twitter that she was busy packing, I actually thought she was going to go over and camp outside Recruit #1’s barrack. Little did I know you ladies were planning road trip to attend K-pop concert. Way to go…. can’t wait for next part.


  3. … and began the adventure !!yeahh!! … Awaiting the next chapter 🙂


  4. thank u for sharing us this u ladies seem to enjoy the road trip and experience quite stuff around u i glad u guy did and also show us the good pic image thair esp Rain poster hmmmmmmm i am sure wanted to know where that come from ekekekek


  5. Loove those images!!! Thanks for posting this, I feel like I was there! The US is soo pretty in Autum!! That’s one of the things that I do miss about my years in NY and Florida. I’m glad you got such a great time! I wanna read more!!


  6. Awesome…loved reading this. Can’t wait to read more. AGHHHH…LOVE the poster!! Beautiful!
    Thanks for sharing your trip with us.


  7. God,how long it took you guys to get to the big apple? I once drove 14 hours fr N.J to N.C God, my back was killing me.( of course,I stop a couple of times) but still, I’d not do it again. Nut it sounds like you guys were having fun.Thx.


    • LOL.

      Renn, it took us 30+ hours to drive the entire trip. It’s about 15 hours one way.

      You’ve got to like to drive, that’s for sure. Which I do, luckily. Don’t do it very often though, so when I do it’s always a treat.

      The only thing different about this trip is we were on a deadline, and I didn’t get to stop much. Most of the time when I take a “road trip,” the “road” is the whole point, and I’m just driving and stopping randomly to see what I can find out about this great country of mine.

      This time, though, I didn’t have time to do anything but drive like a bat outta hell to get to NYC (because of the concert) and then back (because of work). Not the most fun, but it was better than not going at all.

      Terri :-}


  8. *Claps hands* Excellent so far ladies…cant wait for more. Im surprised you ladies didnt kill eachother driving for so long on the road together though….lol. I would have no patience to drive that far. Im so happy I got to meet you both in NY.


    • Gigi,

      It was a delight to meet you too. I wish we had had more time to spend together though. Hopefully, we’ll have a more leisurely time next time.

      Terri :-}


  9. What a trip…

    Terri :-}


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