I remember my first bus trip. I was moving from PA to the big twin cities. I was …19? First time out ever? I took a bottle full of pills with me that weren’t even my prescription, and ate half of them before the bus even left the terminal. About halfway there I lost my wallet with about 500 dollars and all my IDs at the transfer, as well as getting most of my belongings rifled through while I was drooling in the seat. I stared out the window and saw blurs of color. I couldn’t understand what people even said to me. I was alone, and I was free. I didn’t own a goddamn thing and I didn’t give a fuck. Today, nearly 20 years later, I’m sitting on a bus, fully sober, surrounded by food and technology that I own, neatly and haphazardly packed in bags and sacks around me. I have a cellphone, headphones and a laptop, have a career and a boyfriend. When I look out the window I can clearly see. Yet I still feel that same happiness, that same freedom, without the “youth,” without the drugs. The feelings on the buses, similar. The frames of mind, the same. I have not regretted my chemical fueled, overindulged journey but learned that the danger lies in losing that Disney vision of what you think is right. That and don’t fucking carry $500 in cash on you while you travel.