OakHeart On the Go
OakHeart on Tour
After indulging a piping hot Cubano, with an espresso chaser, Victoria and I hit the road in our new whip. Leaving the art deco lined streets and warm waters of South Beach behind, we headed deep into back country Florida; our cross-country road trip was finally under way.
A long day’s drive, carefully managed by 2 hour shifts, brought us to Florida’s Panhandle, where we decided to hug the coast until we reached Destin. It occurred us as we were driving through the lush forests alongside miles of beaches, and green gulf water, how surprisingly underdeveloped the coastline is. Coming from California and Eastern Florida, anything other than a beachfront property blocking one’s view of the water is a foreign concept. There are indeed plenty of resort towns dotted along the coastline, but they appear few and far between. Who knows, maybe this is one of America’s best kept secret. I wonder what this part of the country will look like 20 years from now.
I think it’s safe to say that I was completely blown away by New Orleans. A weekend in NOLA is a fully-fledged assault on the senses. Seasoned Jazz musicians captivate the tourists and locals alike from the street corner, while other spectators watch through the window as they smash home a dozen raw gulf oysters. The pleasant smells from French bakeries waft through the streets of the French Quarter, which is lined with beautiful 18th century colonial architecture. All of these are ingredients for one hell of a good time, so it’s no wonder you see countless bachelor and bachelorette herds grazing the vibrant bar scenes, rubbing shoulders with foodies and jazz purists. I’ll tell you this much, this is my kind of town.
Our trip through Texas seemed to come and go in the blink of an eye, despite the enormous size of the state. We kept very busy in Houston and Austin, but managed to squeeze in some essential BBQ before we disappeared into the plains of west Texas, en route to Denver, trying hard to resist stopping at every country antique store we passed.
In a little under 15 hours, we made the near 1000-mile trip from Austin to Denver, with only one speeding ticket between the two of us. Tens of thousands of people relocate to the mile-high city every year, and it doesn’t take long to formulate reasons why. The landscape is staggering, the breweries plentiful, and for outdoor adventurous people, the possibilities are endless. More often than not, however, it comes down to brass tax. Soaring rental prices in the big coastal cities are driving Millennials in land to places like Austin, Indianapolis, Nashville, and of course Denver. But predictably, as more people move migrate to the county’s interior, it’s hard to imagine the cost of living going anywhere but up. Watch this space.
In fact, the town of Denver is growing so rapidly, that some areas of the city look like they’re being built all at once. River North for instance, is an old industrial district that is under a complete transformation. While there’s a great deal of new construction, architects and designers remain conscious about holding on to some of the historic beauties. For example, take a look at The Source, a collective of modern food vendors inside an old brick foundry from the 1880s. Instead of knocking it down and starting from scratch, they reinforced it, and invited businesses in, to take advantage of the up and coming neighborhood. The designers even kept the graffiti, which covers much of the interior exposed brick. The result is a beautiful marriage between the old and the new.
We chugged into Zion National Park at about 1am, after an exhausting drive from the Rockies and across Utah, only stopping for gas and couple of sunset shots.
Given that the sky was pitch black when we pulled into Zion, you can imagine our shock as we stepped outside in the morning to see 250 million years of geologic history at our doorstep, in the form of 2000 foot cliffs. Not a bad sight if you ask me. – Zion National Park, UT.
Sometimes it felt like hiking on knife’s edge. But the views were worth every side ache and sunburn.
We would normally have driven straight through Vegas, but one does not turn down an invitation to the Nellis Air Force Base, where we met Brigadier General Jeannie Leavitt, the first female fighter pilot in the Air Force. After she graduated from the Weapons School, the most elite fighter pilot program in the Air Force, there would not be another female graduate for 17 years. Needless to say, it was an absolute honor and privilege.
And that’s about all she wrote folks. 4000 miles covered, 11 states explored, and 7 Coldplay albums listened to.
By Daniel Parker
Business Development Manager – West Coast
OakHeart is on the go, supplying the finest European white oak flooring to luxury homes and commercial installations throughout North America.
We deliver only the highest quality oak, sourced from mills with established sustainable production processes and a dedication to traditional craftsmanship.
Catch us on the road in a city near you!