We had five days to get to California from Arkansas in time for my mother's 85th birthday. Since there wasn't a whole lot to see in Oklahoma or Kansas, we decided to just drive through those "boring" states during the night. That way we'd have more time to relax in Aspen, Colorado, the next day... a town we'd heard great things about. The kids would fall asleep in the car, and we'd arrive in Wichita at around one o'clock in the morning. We'd transfer the kids from the car, sleep six or seven hours at the Comfort Inn and get back on the road, refreshed. Clockwork, it would be.
We had always wanted to see Colorado, and Aspen would be a great place to spend quality time with the kids, maybe shop a little, check in at the hotel early, I could hit the spa while my husband played with the kids at the pool, then we'd take them horseback riding before a relaxing dinner al fresco surrounded by the fresh mountain air. This was going to the quintessential family vacation, something for everyone.... I'm so glad I listened to Bev! I just love her... a road trip is exactly what we need to find harmony and togetherness again.
“What an adventure we’re going to have. Something we should have done a long time ago. Aspen, here we come!” I busted out, in a congratulatory tone, as my husband pressed his foot down on the gas pedal. Bev would have been so proud of me. Me and my new positivite attitude about family vacations!
“So, guys… Tonight, on our first night of the trip... YOU get to camp out in the car! WooHoo!”
“What? Camp? In the car?!” my seven-year old daughter answers, her nose scrunched up.
“Well, it’s kinda like camping, only you'll be in your own comfy car seat.” I cheerfully replied.
Then, not even a half a mile from the house, our car chuck full of hundres of dollars worth of road trip survival essentials,
“I don’t want to camp in the car! I HATE road trips!”
“Yeah, we HATE road trips,” my four year old son repeats.
“Listen, guys, hate is a very strong word, okay? Let's not be so negative. Besides, you said this morning that you were really excited about the trip.”
“That’s before we found out we have to sleep in the car! You said we were going to a hotel with a big fancy bed and a pool!”
“Yeah, a pool!” my son chimed in.
“Oh, we are! Only, it’s going to be very late tonight when we arrive in Kansas. Then, after that, you'll have plenty of time at the pool tomorrow when we get to Aspen. Okay?” I tried to explain.
“This is the worst road trip ever!” my daughter fired back.
“Worst trip ever!” my son agreed.
“Who wants lollipops?” sung my husband, pointing to the giant emergency bag he had secretly stashed in the glove compartment.
It was going to be a very long trip... I immediately calculated the Tootsie Roll Pops divided by 1,031 miles to Aspen. There were only eighteen left… That's when I knew I had to beat up Bev.
(Next: Beating Up Bev - How candy NOT show tunes saved us)