About Jay Bishoff

It might never have happened at all. He could have lived a normal, comfortable life in the suburbs of Orange County, California (‘behind the Orange Curtain’ as he now refers to it, cheekily). Jay was 16 years old and had recently attained his driver’s license. His best friend was staying with him for the summer, and nearly every day was a beach day.

On a wild boys night out, Jay was pulled over and given a ticket for ‘passenger riding on roof of vehicle’. When his parents found out how he had been enjoying the privilege of his brand new driver’s license, the axe came down – grounded for an entire month! The next day, Jay and his friend, John, found themselves pulling weeds in the backyard, under the gruelling July sun, and the end of the world seemed near. When John suggested they run away and hitchhike to Canada, never to return, Jay was game. ‘How do you hitchhike?’ he asked, innocently. Thirty minutes later the two were standing on the highway side, and they soon caught their first ride, with the father of one of their friends, who had recognised them.

Jay told him they were just going to the local shopping mall, and he happily gave them a lift. Thus began a two week, 600 mile hitchhiking adventure, north to San Francisco, where they stayed with two funky, older northern California girls. The $40 total between the boys wasn’t enough to get them to Canada, but a seed had been planted. The hypnotizing spell of the suburbs had been forever shattered for Jay Bishoff; in its place now was the call of the open road, toward a lifetime of adventures by thumb.