Not bad, NV.
Like stretches of open land tend to do, Nevada’s Great Basin Desert, the country’s largest at 190,000 square miles, provided much time to think about life.
Here’s what I think at the moment: Many of us are trying not to forget childhood, but I’m out here grasping on to 24. I tell earlytwentysomethings that 24 will be their best year, because it was flawless for me and because once, during my teen years, I heard a radio DJ announce that women peak at 24. The notion stuck.
It was the age I began traveling in earnest, fell for a charming accent, graduated from university, had had two solid years to heal since Dad’s death, and packed my life into this same convertible I’m driving today to start over in San Diego. Because of all these things, 24 was when I began to first believe I could take on the world, and then actually took it on.
I am 28 now; a few years off and more battles won than lost. If I could stay so naively empowered as I was at 24 I would. Maybe the longing for the courage – the entitlement – of 24 is a smidge of why I left my stable life in San Diego to be here, on this empty road through the desert, with the idea that I can still do better.
What was your best year?