We see it in the movies: a group of friends hopping into a car too small with smiles plastered on their faces and without a care in the world. Truth is: road tripping with friends is a lot more complicated, but absolutely worth it.
There is nothing like booking your room in a city everyone is excited to visit. The weeks leading up are filled with Google searches to find the best places to go and figuring out what you should take and whose car is going to make it there and back. The drive there is filled with laughter and car games. There is nothing like arriving and unpacking for the days to come and going out on the town. Driving around, hopping from one tourist destination to the next. As the trip ends, you ride back with a phone filled with preserved memories.
But those aren’t the best parts. The best things are when you are rotating co-pilots to keep the driver up, even when you are tired as hell. It’s getting to the hotel and realizing it doesn’t have a hair dryer and is tiny as can be. It is abandoning your plans and going with whatever pops up. It is realizing you forgot this thing or that and figuring out a solution. It is about late night talks and conquering fears. It is about the ride back ready to do It all over again next year.
This is the time to do this. Go on crazy adventures and enjoy yourself without any responsibility. No kids. No overbearing spouses or arrangements. Just you and your friends.
This will be the time when you realize who your true friends are, because splitting checks and figuring out whose turn it is to pay makes conflict. You learn more about compromise and everyone's money habits in five days than the five+ years you've known them.
In the end, it's OK. Because those moments show character. The ones who were willing to go on this crazy ride with you, willing to split the checks, pitch in to win an adorable plush wolf, and buy you a churro because you had no cash. Those will be things you'll always remember.
It will never be an easy ride. You will fight with each other, but you'll get over it because it's easier to forgive and forget then hold a grudge. You'll push each others' buttons and act like siblings to a point that is annoying. But that's OK. Because every night you'll lay there laughing at the stupid quarrels.
Right now is the time to be spontaneous and adventurous. Perhaps it won't be as picturesque as the movies, but it will be just as worthwhile. The best stories are filled with imperfections that make you laugh and remind you why you did It.