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'How Many Miles You Got on That Thing?'

Sandhills Curiousity Shop in Erick, Okla.
Noah Adams, NPR
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Sandhills Curiousity Shop in Erick, Okla.

Sandhills Curiousity Shop in Erick, Okla. -- home of Harley and Annabelle, "The Mediocre Music Makers."
Noah Adams, NPR /
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Sandhills Curiousity Shop in Erick, Okla. -- home of Harley and Annabelle, "The Mediocre Music Makers."

If you want to drive across the United States, you could cruise at speeds up to 75 mph in most regions and get from coast to coast in a big hurry. But NPR's Noah Adams recently took a more leisurely route from Washington, D.C., to Los Angeles, following much of the storied Route 66 through the heartland of the nation.

"Maybe it's better to stop and linger now and then and get a sense of your companions out there on the road," Adams says. Often, the vehicles on the road tell as much of a story as their drivers.

Adams talked to many people on his way West by introducing himself with a simple question: "How many miles you got on that thing?" The answers proved to be just as interesting as the people themselves.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Noah Adams, long-time co-host of NPR's All Things Considered, brings more than three decades of radio experience to his current job as a contributing correspondent for NPR's National Desk., focusing on the low-wage workforce, farm issues, and the Katrina aftermath. Now based in Ohio, he travels extensively for his reporting assignments, a position he's held since 2003.