Henry Fonda plays Elegant John, an old trucker who steals back his prized rig in California and takes off with almost no money. His Kenworth tractor has the name Eleanor on it. Elegant John once met Eleanor Roosevelt. He pulls a Fruehauf van with a "sunroof". Why is he called Elegant John? Well, sonny, if you drive five million miles without being late or having a wreck, you deserve to be called Elegant. Elegant John picks up Bible-thumping hitchhiker Beebo Crozier, who is going to Florida to learn motel management. Elegant John stops and gets fuel. Beebo reluctantly pays for fuel. The two stop at a whorehouse for truckers at Cheyenne, Wyoming, a possible homage to Fonda's movie The Cheyenne Social Club. The prostitutes are about to be raided, and the madam hires Elegant John to take them to the coast of South Carolina to start another prostitution business. Thus Elegant John's trip will be coast to coast.