The mind wanders as the mighty Tundra heads south on cruise control.

I don’t know why, but it gives me great pleasure to flash my headlights when a semi safely passes, then they flash their tail lights in appreciation. I have decided to slow the Tundra down to get better gas mileage, with a kayak on the roof racks, so about 50,000 big rigs have passed me this week.

Not many Maine people take their watercraft with them to Florida. I noted the first other vehicle with a kayak on the roof at almost exactly 1,500 miles, deep into Florida.

If I do this for 18 more years, I will never get used to crossing the Florida line. For me, it means winter is over.

It’s worth the $5 toll to take the bridge to Jekyll Island in Georgia, a recent discovery. At the remarkably cheap Villas by the Ocean, the dining room offers wine at $6 a glass or $10 for the bottle. Are they kidding?

I spend most of my driving day in the South scanning the AM dial looking for the nearest ESPN station. What I get are religious shows, from end to end.

As a New Englander, I have always felt that my religion is my business and your religion is all yours. I don’t want to hear about your religion. If I ever do, I will ask. Until then, put a lid on it. Celebrate your beliefs as passionately as you can, as long as I don’t have to listen.

Poland Spring water is my American Express. I can’t leave home without it. You don’t miss your water until your well runs dry, the blues singers love to tell us. If you try to buy bottled water on the highway, you will long for that bottle of Poland Spring. I have no explanation, it just tastes better. I have a case of liter bottles and it had better last. Should have gotten two before I left.

Perhaps I am a little paranoid. But “they” seem to find a reason to inflate gas prices every time I drive to Florida. I have come to believe that all those Mideast riots are a ruse by the oil companies to stick it to me once again.

I paid $3.01 per gallon leaving Charleston, then 24 cents higher the very next day in Georgia. It’s now about $3.60. It costs me $50 for half a tank in the Tundra. Perhaps I should have purchased another Honda (I have had eight) instead of this monster.

Despite traveling for the week, I managed to watch the Oscars. What a mistake. It always amazes me that the greatest entertainers in the world cannot produce and direct a simple television show employing the most beautiful people on the planet.

I do not care about film editing awards, or cinematography awards. I don’t want to hear endless thanks to people I have never heard of. Keep the fabulous Kirk Douglas at home, please. Cut the show in half. Give us the best picture, best actor and actress, best supporting roles and best foreign films. Keep it to an hour. Then, and only then, will I watch again. Awards dinners are just about as interesting as sales conventions. More movie clips, fewer speeches, please. Give out those other awards in the afternoon.

I finally did make it to Fort Myers (12 days after leaving Cobb Manor) and an actual Red Sox baseball game. The optimism this year is boundless and somehow, unsuitable for a New England team. I was hardly in my seat when someone called Brent Dlugach made a horrible error at shortstop for the Red Sox. Russ Letourneau, the bus-driving legend in the next seat, informed me it was the second of the game for Dlugach. That was nothing. He then took a throw from the catcher on a steal play with his bare hand, instead of his glove. That had to hurt. It got worse. The next day, Dlugach dislocated his shoulder, diving for another elusive grounder.

It got a lot worse.

The pitcher the Red Sox will need desperately if they go anywhere this year, one Josh Beckett, got beaned by a baseball in practice and has a concussion.

I have a bad feeling about these Red Sox. Don’t make World Series hotel reservations just yet. I don’t care what they do, as long as they finish ahead of the Yankees and I don’t have to listen to John Purcell.

No matter what they do, they have a better chance of seeing October than Charlie Sheen does.

Send complaints and compliments to Emmet Meara at