The 5: Jessica Watkin’s Five Most Interesting Places to Sleep While Walking Across America

The 5: Jessica Watkin’s Five Most Interesting Places to Sleep While Walking Across America

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I’m a standup comic and filmmaker dwelling in New York Metropolis. A number of years in the past I stop my day job ready tables and walked throughout the USA performing comedy. For the higher a part of a 12 months, I walked solo from Delaware to California, pushing a operating stroller full of drugs dwelling off the kindness of strangers and questionable jokes. I did the stroll to quick observe my standup profession—that didn’t work!—BUT, I did movie a documentary called SPECIALish. SPECIALish is part comedy special, part footage from the road, and it’s being released all places digital May 11th. Watch the trailer under!

Whereas on the stroll I stayed at campgrounds, state parks, the facet of highways, motels, resorts, a tour bus, a treehouse, used journey web sites like Heat Showers, Sofa browsing, and full strangers opened up their houses and households to me. Most days I didn’t know the place I’d lay my head that night time, however one way or the other it all the time labored out, each place saved me protected. 

The High 5 locations I slept whereas strolling throughout the U.S. doing comedy 

Alongside The C & O Canal 

In spring, I walked the 184.5 mile lush inexperienced path that snakes between the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal and the Potomac River. The canal runs from Washington, D.C., to Cumberland, Maryland and operated from 1831 till 1924 to transport previous timey cargo, principally coal from the Allegheny Mountains. The Potomac River is gorgeous, generally raging and apparently one of the crucial polluted waterways within the nation as I used to be consistently warned to not truly contact or get within the water. #America. Not like some other path I took, there have been free hiker/biker campsites each dozen or so miles. The websites had nice vistas, water wells to pump and porta potties to your bum, making it a pleasant path to camp alongside.


East Nashville, Tennessee 

There isn’t a place like dwelling. It’s the place I used to be born and raised and the place my household has known as dwelling for over 70 years. I grew up in the identical home my Dad did and my mother and father nonetheless reside there subsequent door to my Memaw. Nashville has been via rather a lot within the final 12 months and half—tornados, Christmas day bombing, floods, extra tornadoes—however this city could make it via something and it’s price a go to. Within the age of covid, skip the downtown vacationer traps and tremendous spreader bars and luxuriate in all of the fantastic out of doors parks and greenways Nashville and its surrounding areas have to supply! Seize a motorbike trip on the Fontanel, a canoe down the Harpeth, or hit up a vineyard. *We’re not accepting bachelorette events* 

The Toaster Home  – Pie City, New Mexico  

Since earlier than my stroll began I’d heard about Pie City, New Mexico. Some would say it’s in the midst of nowhere however as Kathy from the Pie-O-Neer instructed me… “all roads result in Pie.” She was proper. In case you are touring straight via the Southwest, you’ll seemingly move via Pie City (and in case you haven’t learn this, you would possibly miss it). Snuggled on this excessive elevation “ghost” city alongside the properly traveled continental divide, that—in line with my analysis—ranges from a inhabitants of 111 to 186, rests a big wooden cabin known as The Toaster Home. Why is it known as The Toaster Home? I don’t know to inform you the reality, however I do know that there are dozens of previous toasters hanging throughout the property and an indication on the door that reads, “nobody lives right here, make your self(ves) at dwelling”. It’s a hiker, biker haven in the midst of the desert full of the reminiscences and treasures from years of these passing via. Like a mirage, there’s an previous fridge on the again porch  stocked with frozen pizza and beer. All maintained from the donations and kindness of strangers. 

On the facet of the street in New Mexico  

As you get West, the cities get additional and additional aside and your solely guess for a very good night time’s sleep is a bit stealth tenting. You wish to wait till the solar goes down, simply earlier than the darkness falls, and discover a good tree or bush for canopy and throw your tent up. Numerous land out West is THE BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT, which implies they’re public lands and it’s your proper to camp there. However generally it’s arduous to know the distinction between private and non-private property so your finest guess is go unnoticed and go away earlier than the dawn with no hint left behind. New Mexico known as the Land of Enchantment and tenting below that huge vibrant night time sky, you perceive precisely why. 

Some On line casino in Arizona 

The longest day I walked was 36 miles. It was after a 3 day street tenting stint, which ended with me making it to a on line casino simply outdoors of Phoenix, AZ. I keep in mind a sizzling bathe, a chilly pool, and successful $50 taking part in no-limit maintain’em. (Principally, I like to recommend staying at any on line casino.) Casinos have a wild vitality, the sensation that something might occur, that every one your luck might change tonight. It’s a hopeful feeling to have, and when 13 hours of your day has been dodging oncoming site visitors, abruptly a fortunate roll of the cube feels prefer it may very well be simply across the bend.


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