Day 25 in Florida was a strange day. I woke up at 3:30 AM in the dirtiest, worst motel room I’ve stayed in yet. There were cigarette burns in the pillow case. I tried to go back to sleep but couldn’t so I packed my bag and sat in the chair until sunrise.
By 9 AM I was on the campus of Florida State University (Tallahassee). I went over to the English building, to see if I could connect with some of the poets and fiction writers on campus, but no one was around. In fact, the entire campus was deserted except for 3,000 beautiful girls in sundresses. I’m in Heaven, I thought. Why did I not go to Florida State? “What’s going on?” I asked someone. “Sorority recruitment day!!!!!!!” The sun got a little hotter and the make-up began to melt and I thought: okay, it’s possible I’m in hell.
After lunch I found a place called Railroad Square. What a cool spot! It’s basically a verdant little artists colony, an “art park,” hidden inside the city, thirty or so studios all in the same block.
That’s where I found this guy, Matt. He builds giant xylophones and other percussion instruments completely from scratch. The one he was working on at the moment was bound for the New York Symphony Orchestra.
That night I officially made it coast to coast – all within seven days, in fact. I explored the oldest town in America, St. Augustine, with my buddy Andy, and got a good night’s rest before heading north to Savannah.