Tuesday, July 28, 2009

road trip

When I was little, my parents drove us 4 kids from Illinois to California every other summer in a Plymouth Volare.
I have vivid memories of waking up in Texas stuck to light blue vinyl seats, hot and crying, because the air condtitioning did not make it past the front seat head rests.
I also remember Burger Chef, a fast food restaraunt, that stuck prizes right in the wrapper of your cheeseburger.
And I remember wearing no seat belts and the four of us being laid down to sleep in the back of Blue Bessie rolled up like small sausages in sleeping bags as we made our way across the country at night.
We entertained ourselves by coloring, playing the alphabet game and singing John Denver songs.
We tormented our parents by asking every 7.9 minutes, "Are we there yet?"
Their ultimate threat was, "Do we need to pull over?" We did, on occasion.
We did not pull over every time we had to go to the bathroom, however, and unless you caught Dad before he passed a gas station exit you knew you had missed your opportunity.
We NEVER turned around. We were always moving forward.
Sunday afternoon after church, we loaded our three boys into our mini van to head from Palo Alto, California to Fort Collins,Colorado.
Our plan was to reach Elko, Nevada by 9 at night. Or 1:30 in the morning as it turned out. We were also crammed in like sausages with all of our gear.
But this is traveling in luxury, tsgs.
Each child had their own fabric covered seat, coloring books and favorite reading material, not to mention their own air conditioning nozzle.
We also set up a mini entertainment system on the cooler using the laptop and small speakers.
Scott brought his i-pod downloaded with Disney tunes and we hit up Trader Joe's for snacks.
These kids are traveling in high style. There should be no complaints.
Just in case you were wondering, in between California and Colorado there is a whole
of brown. And some desert. And some more desert. I saw a tumbleweed.
But suprisingly with all of the fine accoutrements and high quality snacks, the conversations were the same.
About 17 minutes out of Palo Alto, one of the boys said, "Are we there yet?"
Scott did indeed threaten to pull over somewhere in Wyoming.
We sang every single Jonas brother song we knew.
Yesterday, we stopped 8 times to use the bathroom. The children have not yet learned to sync up their bladders.
The highlight was last night as we pulled up to the hotel in the middle of a lightning storm, when Addie said,
"Mom, I don't have to go the bathroom anymore....."
"Oh, I'm so glad...."
"Because I went a little bit in my pants."
"Stop! STOP! Hold it in!"
And so the road trip continues. You couldn't have one without a little high drama.
Today the fun the begins when we get to Grandma and Grandpa's.
Colorado here we come!

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Erica said...

I believe after this summer and all of our treks to CO, we need to come up with a "we're going to Grandma's house" song, like the Inmans had for Grandma B's house. Dontcha think?

JanaMac said...

Ok, just got your email. Cannot believe that you are so close to me and yet so far away!! If life wasn't crazy busy for us right now w/ county fair, I'd make the 4 1/2 drive to see you!!! Have a wonderful time in CO and think of me as you drive through WY :o)

Lois Lane II said...

Have a fun trip!!

jenny said...

Gotta love the road trips with kids... and you're right, they do have it made these days. Our family traveled a LOT when we were younger, moving across the country every couple of years. I don't remember ever having snacks.

And I just remembered a song my sisters and I made up once when going to visit our grandparents... (this is for Erica's comment)

It was Christmas time... to the tune of Jingle Bells:

Driving in our car, in our Chevrolet
over the hills we go, laughing all the way (ha ha ha)
Tires on our car slide
Right into a tree
Oh what fun it is to drive when it's so slippery!

Oh drive our car, drive our car
Through the snow and ice
Oh what fun it is to drive when the weather isn't nice
Drive our car, drive our car
Through the snow and ice
Oh what fun it is to drive when the weather isn't nice!

Have fun! I'm sure you'll come up with a good song for the drive home. Your boys may cringe, but you and Scott can have fun with it!

Just Me,Pilgrim said...

Ah...memories of road trips in the 70's and 80's.... sticky vinyl car seats, coloring books, 100 rounds of Old McDonald and the Alphabet Song with my sister, and fried chicken in the cooler. Thanks for the trip down memory lane... I think.

Enjoy your trip...hang in there!

Beth said...

Don't you just love road trips with kids? :-)

My road trip memories always involve me sitting in the back seat of a sedan of some sort, perched on the hump in the middle between my mom and her sister/BFF/whoever else was traveling with us. Dad and my uncle/his BFF/whoever else was traveling with us took turns driving. A Marty Robbins 8-track played continuously as we drove cross-country and back for three solid weeks.

Oh, did I mention that we were on the road by 8 every morning? And covered at least 500 miles EVERY DAY? And that we always took backroad detours because daddy wanted to avoid the big cities?

And the smoke. Everyone was a smoker then and a lovely white fog constantly filled the interior.

And I was the only occupant under 50 years of age.

Yep - smoke, Marty Robbins and old people. Good times, good times...:-)