This past Saturday my girlfriend Nichole, my dog Ellie and I participated in the local Alfa Romeo club’s spring rally. Organized by my friend Dean, it promised to be a 136 mile drive of great roads and cars. Here’s Dean’s GTV:

Even though it poured a few times, all of us set off for an adventure through the hills southwest of Austin. I figured it’d be a good chance to see what I need to address before I drive to Norman, OK in just under two weeks for a Vintage Triumph Register event. As we set off with out tulip rally sheets in hand, my mind went back to the Jalopnik SXSW panel discussion about the future of cars and driving.

You may recall that some panel members thought automated cars were coming, and real driving was on the way out. One member even stated that racing has no innovation other than Formula E. I thought that absurd, but hey, he was on the panel and I wasn’t. However, most of the cars were older, and I was one of the younger guys at the drive.

Advertisement

Of course, there is always one outlier, though there were 2 of these on the run. Sound glorious, but too small for me to fit in for any length of time. There was a reason Hammond drove it on Top Gear...

As we navigated our way past Dripping springs, I wondered why would driving through beautiful, peaceful scenery ever fall out of favor? It was so nice to not see a tall building, or any buildings really, for miles on end. Nichole mentioned how being on a drive like this forced you to be in the moment, and not do anything but enjoy and absorb the experience. Ellie was happy as well. New sights and smells for her nose. I felt like so many people are missing out on actually being involved with the world by just sitting in a box, be it home, office, or insulated rolling cocoon. Soon we arrived at the intermediate stopping point, and we had a few minutes to peruse some nice machines...

Advertisement

Fiat Dino and a nice BMW moto, followed by...

Advertisement

and...

Advertisement

Sadly, we had to cut back early to get back for a previous engagement. The drive on 290 back to town was uninspiring and just a way to get home. That’s when it hit me. Most driving and roads are just a tool for most people. There is no moment to enjoy, just a purpose to get to the next box. I’m glad I can’t live like that, and that the moment is too important for me for just pass through without enjoying.