What I Learned from a Two-Day Road Trip

“I” is for insights from my trip down I-95 this week

John Dean
4 min readDec 2, 2021


Photo by JameS93 via Wikimedia

Seventeen hours is a lot of time to look at cars and trips zipping down Interstate 95 as it wends its way down from Maryland to Florida. You can learn a bit about America and the human condition just by keeping your eyes open and thinking about what you have seen.

Here are the takeaways from what I saw:

There are an incredible number of truck drivers on the road at all hours of the day. I’ve heard a shortage of drivers helped cause the supply chain crisis. The drivers I saw are working overtime to solve the problem.

The worst trucks, other than the “Oversized Load” road pigs, are the fuel trucks. The drivers are fine, but I don’t like the fact that they are carrying thousands of gallons of gas and driving 80 miles per hour as they roar by me.

I saw too many of these. Photo by Antonino Visalli on Unsplash

Drivers of “boy racer” cars drive worse than the rest of us. No deep insight here, but I got sick of the Subaru WRXs, souped-up Civics, and pretty much every BMW made except the SUVs, zipping by me at 110 miles per hour. Presumably, many of the drivers were drunk or drugged or learned how to drive on video games. I don’t accept these excuses.

Nobody drives the speed limit. I wanted to comply with the law because I wasn’t in a hurry to get to my destination, but the other traffic wouldn’t let me. If you drive 75 on I-95 you constantly have cars and, yes, huge trucks, pull up to around two feet from your bumper waiting for an opportunity to zip over to the passing lane. It’s scary.

Police are scarce. Given that I was driving over the speed limit, I should be happy not to have seen many “bears.” I only saw one car pulled over the whole trip and I wasn’t sure it was for speeding. It was in Georgia. For all I know, the driver may have been on his way to register voters.

South Carolina’s part of I-95 is the pits. Parts of it look unchanged from the 1950s with concrete roadbeds with major cracks in them. My assumption is that the state legislature is in the control of tire and alignment repair…



John Dean

Writing on politics, photography, nature, the environment, dogs, and, ocasionally, humor. Editor of Dean’s List.