Friday 02 Dec 2016

Car Ride
Jennifer Flaten

Cabin fever makes you do crazy things. What kinds of crazy things Oh, all sorts of things. Fine, you want examples, crazy things-like planning a vacation.

Yes, I know that doesn't sound that crazy at all. Why, that even sounds like fun. Who wouldn't be cheered up by a mid winter get away.

Let me explain (a) this is not a fun in the sun, go to a resort that caters to your every whim, adults only vacation (b) said vacation isn't until June.

Oh no, this is a family vacation. Wait, it gets better, not only is it a family vacation, but it is a family vacation that involves a car trip. A very long car trip, I should add.

I told you it was crazy. We all know that family vacations involving long car trips never end well. In fact, I think the whole incident with the Donner party started as a family vacation.

What can I say, I was suffering from BTLSISS or been too long since I've seen sun. Which along with making one rather pasty in appearance, apparently, causes one to think that riding for 8 hours in a car with three children would be fun.

In my defense, I am a mom and things like the agony of childbirth and the last long car trip fade tend to fade rather quickly our minds.

Since it was the deepest part of January when I began planning the trip summer seemed a very, very, did I mention very, long time away.

I chose a destination that was fun and family orientated-1,000 miles away. Of course, you are asking, "why couldn't you find those same things closer?" I just couldn't, so there!

Who cares if it is a thousand miles away, and gas is once again a billion dollars a gallon, won't it be fun to drive that far together with three small children?

Three little octopuses who can't keep their hands, feet and various other body parts, off on another on quick drive to the grocery store, who will now be crammed together like sardines for 8 whole hours!

The added bonus of hearing at least once every five minutes "are there yet?" and I know one or all three will definitely have to go to the bathroom approximately five minutes after we pass the "Last rest stop for 100 miles" sign.

This is turning out to be the summer of the car. For reasons unknown, okay a blatant lie, it is because I picked the week for the long vacation without looking closely at the calendar.

This in attention to detail resulted in one long, long car trip about two weeks before a shorter car trip.

The shorter car trip is only about three hours-not short by regular standards but after comparing it to the long trip a mere tool around the block.

Normally, my kids look forward to the short car trip. Mainly, because we stop for many snacks and our final destination includes a parade and fireworks, but maybe not so much this year.

I can just hear the moans of terror now "No, not the car again!" I know I for one will not want anything to do a motor vehicle after both trips. I say that now but who knows what might happened next year when cabin fever sets in?

I do think I need to save up for a vacation after the vacation-one where a nice quiet facility sends a shuttle to pick me up.

Jennifer Flaten lives where the local delicacy is fried cheese, Wisconsin. She writes about family life, its amusing or not so amusing moments. "At least it's not another article on global warming," she says. Jennifer bakes a mean banana bread and admits an unusual attraction to balloon animals and cup cakes. Busy preparing for the zombie apocalypse, she stills finds time to write "As I See It," her witty, too often true column. "My urge to write," says Jennifer, "is driven by my love of cupcakes, with sprinkles on top. Who wouldn't write for cupcakes, with sprinkles," she wonders.

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