Computing Across America, Chapter 23 by Steven K. Roberts Gainesville, Florida February 14, 1984  And the road, like a woman, lies down before him.— Nancy Johnson, “Ballad of Spooner,” Mellow Lady Security vs FreedomCommitment vs ChangeLove vs Wanderlust Must those be forever mutually exclusive? Freedom and security, freedom and security — the dilemma keeps resurfacing like the accusing…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 22 by Steven K. Roberts Northern Florida — January 31, 1984 (photo by Katy Peden, Clearwater)  You’re taking the trip and the trip’s taking you in equal measure. If it takes you five years to finish, the pace will still be exactly right.— Barbara Bernstein There are many ways to travel. You can drive…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 21 by Steven K. Roberts Gulf of Mexico January 22, 1984 I’m just a son of a son, son of a son,son of a son of a sailor.— Jimmy Buffet I wandered the docks of Fort Zachary Taylor with a yellow plastic band affixed to my wrist — one of those crimp-on…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 20 by Steven K. Roberts Key West, Florida January 19, 1984 It’s better to burn out than fade away.— Neil Young Nothing had changed, but everything was different. I rode the familiar streets, taking a serpentine route to where I supposed the action was. I didn’t have the money to stay on…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 19 by Steven K. Roberts Key West, Florida January 13, 1984 You can’t have paradise and a network node.— Charles McGuinness (Photo above by Barbara Bernstein, taken in the garden of Key West’s idyllic Merlinn Guest House as I signed in to check mail and upload a story.) I stood and…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 18 by Steven K. Roberts Key West, Florida January 3, 1984 Where are you coming from?— Question heard all down the coast, contrasting sharply with the usual “Where are you going?” It had been a hard day. I was southbound at the 28th parallel, searching for a place to sleep. This was…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 17 by Steven K. Roberts Gainesville, Florida December 23, 1983 The wanderer’s danger is to find comfort.— William Least Heat Moon, in Blue Highways Fevers, in a twisted way, are kind of fun. This one was: I lay without responsibility, making irrational comments and easing open an aching eyelid now and…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 16 by Steven K. Roberts Gainesville, Florida December 15, 1983 A variety of nothing is superior to a monotony of something.— Jean Paul Richter There it was at last: Florida. I could see the green sign far ahead on the last long stretch of Highway 17 in Georgia, and steeled myself…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 15 by Steven K. Roberts Brunswick, Georgia December 1, 1983 A guest sticks a nail in the wall even if he stays but one night.— Polish proverb I did not expect to find magic in Brunswick, Georgia. I wouldn’t have been surprised by love, lavish southern hospitality, or even a pocket of…

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Computing Across America, Chapter 14 by Steven K. Roberts Savannah, Georgia — November 26, 1983 Birth and death were easy. It was life that was hard. — Tom Robbins, Jitterbug Perfume Ashepoo, South Carolina — the day before Thanksgiving. I stopped to take a much-needed break from the two-lane truck route known as US 17,…

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