Prior to booking the first four legs of my journey, I asked myself this morning: Self, will there even be time to read while you're trekking by train across the US of A? I had laid out a stack of books for myself and when I looked at them this morning, as I was imagining the characters I will be meeting - including the ones I will be building in my head - it occurred to me that perhaps there will be no time for me to delve into the worlds of other's imaginations. Maybe that is shortsighted, yet I can't help but feel that I will need all of the headspace possible so I may be creating worlds of my own. 

Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead is coming with me regardless. Such an incredible work of literary art, I am but 3/4 the way through and am so excited to complete it and then start all over again. Just under 700 pages containing the magical descriptions of modern architecture and the human form. Rand's words spill like carmel from the pages and I seductively lap up every last drop. The contrast of the characters and what they each represent symbolically is the pinnacle of any great novelist's work. I aspire to be such a literary genius, but feel flattened by a society that snorts upon round pegs in square holes. On the surface I may appear to be more Peter Keating than Howard Roark, but my soul knows damn well that I am pure Dominique Francon. As she has been described as a character with contradictory assertions. Some mistaken, her actions are seen as a logical ideal of how her black and white ideas play out. Like Dominique, I myself am a "fence-sitter" and it is rare that you can know what to expect out of me. Although, I know I am much more loving and human than Dominique, her personification might possibly fit me best out of all of Rand's Fountainhead characters. 

With my trip almost halfway booked, I am still well aware that anything can happen at any time, forcing change upon any already planned legs or stops, people or places. The intent of this trip is not to be rigid in my schedule and rather flexible so that smelling the roses is a natural occurrence with each of my movements. However, I have decided to reach out to many people in advance: friends, family and even people of the literary and publishing world. It's like I am sticking my tongue out in the rain and I know I will get many hits of liquid atmosphere; all will be special and unique. One sprinkle may change my life, where others may simply make me smile or open my eyes. I will accept all drops with love and drink them up. Perhaps I misspoke in first declaring my goal. I am not going out simply to become a published author. No, I am going out to reach and touch glimmering souls like myself who wish nothing more than to be seen and treated as a beautiful human and who only try to do the best they can with each passing day.