In Big Sur, Route 1 snaked the hills and dips and cliffs, begging more than my usual dexterity. The fog gave way to an azure sky, folds of hills, and and then occasionally drifted back over the road, a curtain in an open window. When a rock the size of a cocker spaniel fell behind me, I could see the splash of its debris in my rearview as it bounced heavily off the road. Still, there was nothing I could do, no number of pullovers, roadside root beers, close calls, or dangerous turns, no singing out the window that could leave me feeling like I had any sort of permanence within that place. This, I began to realize, was not going to change anytime soon.