Watch

Capturing Beauty Along American Highways

Creator:
Published:
December 14, 2023
November 8, 2019
Healing-After-Divorce|Healing-After-Divorce-Square

34-year-old Ian Shankster took to the road as a truck driver full-time. Along his routes, he discovered an unexpected beauty in deteriorating American farmsteads.

Video Transcript

Ian Shankster: You can start to overthink things when you're on the road for so long. When you're just sitting by yourself for so long, you can replay a lot of scenarios, and I found that's a bad cycle. It's a lot better to plan for the future, than focused on things that maybe went wrong in the past.

A few years back, I went through a divorce; it really upended my world. I tend to think through a lot of those things, and I always try not to forget about the journey.

Yeah, being out on the road, and traveling, it's given me time to process the things I've been through, and also move forward.

We have avoided all restaurants since about 11 o'clock this morning, I have a hunch that it's gonna be someplace nasty.

Truck driving almost seems like a dirty old man job and full of rough characters. Ready to go. I don't feel like I fall into that category at all. It's serving me not only my itch to travel and see the country, but also it's affording me the opportunity to do that while paying off student loans.

Almost everyone around me, they assume that for me to be happy, I should be married and have a family, and I just kinda wonder where that mindset originates, and if they're right.

There's a truck over that has a bunch of orange juice in the back of it; he tried to deliver it, and it was the wrong flavor. So now he's just getting rid of it for free.

Alright, well thank you very much.

Other truck driver: You're welcome, you need help carrying it?

Ian: No, I-

Other truck driver: I thought you were gonna take more than one.

Ian: I just want one.

Other truck driver: Bull.

Ian: That's a lot of juice.

Other truck driver: Two, there you go. Take two. They're good with vodka, too.Ian: Just doing curls, I don't have a lot of time just to work out. It kinda gets the blood flowing and keeps the drive going long.

Grotto: Curls for the girls?

Ian: That is the main reason I do them.

Ian photographs beauty among American highways, and shares it on Instagram.

Ian: That's what life is like, it's filled with sadness, and heaviness, and decay. Yet, all at the same time, there's beauty intermingled right with it. That's my constant hope is to be able to find that, show it to other people, and push to always see the beauty, even in the heaviness, or the struggle.

There's some beautiful sunsets, deteriorating barns. There's a lot of times where it felt like everything lined up beyond my control. Ultimately, that's the hope for my whole life, that things line up beyond what I can control even.

Seek Beauty (Church bells)

Creators:
Grotto
Published:
December 14, 2023
November 8, 2019
On a related note...
How to Help a Friend Who Is Considering Divorce

How to Help a Friend Who Is Considering Divorce

Maria Walley

"Orchids"

"Orchids"

Barbara Lisette

What Dealing With Death on a Daily Basis Has Taught Me

What Dealing With Death on a Daily Basis Has Taught Me

Alexandria Wellman

6 Ways to Keep Learning After College

6 Ways to Keep Learning After College

Evan Holguin

3 Ways to Help Foster Kids — Without Becoming a Parent

3 Ways to Help Foster Kids — Without Becoming a Parent

Grace Wirth

Why It’s OK to Move Home After College

Why It’s OK to Move Home After College

Robert Christian

Building a Strong Marriage as a Child of Divorce

Building a Strong Marriage as a Child of Divorce

Dr. Daniel, Bethany Meola

The El Paso Pilgrimage

The El Paso Pilgrimage

Grotto

How to Stress Less About Money This Year

How to Stress Less About Money This Year

Sarah Coffey

What It’s Really Like to Give Away a Kidney

What It’s Really Like to Give Away a Kidney

Josh Noem

Simone Biles Leaves Olympic Competition for Her Mental Health

Simone Biles Leaves Olympic Competition for Her Mental Health

Grotto Shares

Mom First, Fashion Second

Mom First, Fashion Second

Grotto

Storytime with Mr. Stephen — For The Joy of Reading

Storytime with Mr. Stephen — For The Joy of Reading

Grotto

How to Chase Success — the Right Way

How to Chase Success — the Right Way

Chris Hazell

6 Tips for Getting Your Passion Project Off the Ground

6 Tips for Getting Your Passion Project Off the Ground

Lillian Fallon

How I Saved Enough Money to Take a Gap Year

How I Saved Enough Money to Take a Gap Year

Marye Colleen Larme

Start Your Day With These Yoga Postures

Start Your Day With These Yoga Postures

Hanna Van Elk

The One Thing Working Mothers Need to Find Balance

The One Thing Working Mothers Need to Find Balance

Katie Prejean McGrady

4 Tips for Making Long-Distance Relationships Work

4 Tips for Making Long-Distance Relationships Work

Kate Fowler

How Do We Avoid Tech Interfering With Our Humanity?

How Do We Avoid Tech Interfering With Our Humanity?

Erin Spruit

newsletter

We’d sure love to be pals.

Like what you see? Make it easy on yourself and we’ll meet you right in your inbox next time.