Every play the license plate game? I love to play it when I am on a trip.
This is my rule, you can't count a state while you are in the state. I hate it when a colored plate whizzes by too fast to read the plate. Or the plate frame covers the state's name. (I was glad when Texas made it illegal to have the state name covered.) Last year I went to Orlando and Las Vegas on 2 trips. Since cars are often moving too fast to read them while I am driving, another rule I have is that it is legal to look for them in parking lots.
Large amusement parks and hotels always yield a wealth of plates. An amazing thing I have found is that a Texas plate is usually the first out of state plate I see. We are everywhere! I collected quite a few when I was in Orlando, but when I got home I put the list away. I didn't think much more about it until one Friday afternoon, while I was running errands after work I was sitting at a red light in Duncanville. Remember, I said Duncanville. I couldn't believe it, there were 6 different out of state license plates waiting with me for the light to change. Did I say I was in Duncanville? I did one of those 360 degree looks to verify where I was. I really for a second I had slipped into an alternate universe. I have spent most of my life explaining where Duncanville was, yet here were 6 cars from different states at the same place, at the same time in Duncanville. (And they weren't from Lousisanna, Arkansas, New Mexico or Oklahoma.) I was thinking did I miss something in news?
While I was still contemplating this event, someone at work transferred back to HQs from Hawaii. They shipped their car back! So when I saw a Hawaiian license plate in Dallas, Texas, what could I do but accept the challenge to spot all 50 states in the year. I pulled the list out and knowing I could collect a lot in Nevada in the fall. By the end of the year I had spotted 49 states, missing only Montana. And I probably saw it in Nevada and missed writing it down.
I decided to see how long it would take to find the states this year. Once again I am blown away. In the month of January, driving within the boundaries of Dallas country, I have spotted 34 different states. One afternoon, my brother and I were running some errands. One was to pick up my nephew at a private school in Oak Cliff (in south Dallas). I was explaining the game and what I was finding, and there were three out-of -state plates in the school's parking lot.
It is possible that I have been obvious to different plates around me in the past, but I don't think so. I know that ever since Katrina you see a lot of Louisiana plates. It is true that number has been dwindling the farther we get from the holidays, but I hardly ever make a trip without seeing one, even if it is one of the neighboring states. I can't help but believe that something is happening. I wonder if these are folks looking for jobs.
This used to be fun, but now it is almost an obsession with me . When I started my spreadsheet last year I stored it in a folder called 'Travel'. That is what it is suppose to be a game for when you are traveling not for when you are running errands.
At least now you know about my obsession. I am hoping that you will be a character witness for me in the event I am ever picked up for suspicious behavior in a parking lot. You can say, no, she wasn't lurking, she was collecting license plates. Of, course I don't think that sounds good either.