Howdy Hi from the open road. I'm writing today from my sisters camper. We're going 65 m.p.h. down the PA turnpike as I write. We are in a decent sized motor home, pulling a car behind us. We were our own mini-convoy. You got a copy on me? Come on.
So I'm typing away. My laptop is connected to a wireless router which uses an air card. Liv is listening to CD's and drawing illustrations for a story she's working on. Lea is sleeping off the last of the Dramamine. Shelby is reading us jokes from a joke book. Wendy has just cleaned up after lunch and is headed to the back bedroom to read. Tom and Mark are taking turns driving and sleeping. When Lea wakes up, they'll probably watch a movie.
I used the bathroom while the vehicle was moving. Awesome. I kept thinking about that lady I saw on the Today show last week who was using the bathroom in an airplane when they hit some turbulence and she hit the roof or something and was paralyzed. I was pretty sure that wasn't gonna happen in a camper, but I peed fast anyway, just to be safe.
As I came out of the bathroom, I glanced back at my sister, sound asleep in her queen-sized bed with her book beside her. It was hard not to remember traveling with her when we were the wee ones.
(Scene blurs, lines squiggle and fade, indicating that it's time for the flashback sequence.)
I've mentioned before that my dad was a teacher and my mom was a SAHM. In the summer of 1970 they decided it would be super-fun to spend the full summer traveling across the country in a little car pulling a travel trailer with a 7 year old and a 5 year old.
It goes without saying that said car and camper did not have anything as luxurious or frivolous as air conditioning. We rolled down the windows. Manually. It goes without saying that there were no DVD's or CD's or iPods. There was an AM radio and we all listened to the same thing. Should I try to do some more? Twenty-five or six to four... We played license plate bingo and we counted cows. At 7 and 5 we knew every state capital. These were good ways to pass the time. Another good way to pass the time when you're 7 and 5 and confined in the back seat of a small car is to fight and pick.
"She touched me."
"Her foot is on my side."
"MAKE HER STOP LOOKING AT ME!"
And, of course, the requisite:
"Are we there yet?"
We all survived to tell the tale. Wendy and I had perpetually bruised wrists that whole summer from my mom holding on to us a little too tightly as we shared campgrounds and state parks with what she called "hippies, weirdos and druggies".
But we all survived, and were better for the experience.
Coming out of my flashback I look at out three girls. Books, snacks, CD's, DVD's, iPods, phones, games, computers... they have it so good!
And then I heard it.
"Are we there yet?"
Are you freakin' kidding me?