Okay, okay, I didn’t really want to beat up Bev, just pinch her, really, really hard.
Why did I listen to her? I should never have told her my woes about spending all our summer vacation money on airfare to California.
“Oh, it will be a lot cheaper than flying!” she chirped like a cheery morning songbird who hated to fly and instead preferred the thrill of sitting in the car, singing Rogers and Hammerstein for thousands of miles.
“And, don’t forget, it’s an experience you will always remember!”
Why do sisters always think you should have “experiences” that need remembering? What about experiences you want to forget and hope no one ever brings up again?
And now that I think of it... when did she ever take a road trip with her kids across the country when they were four and seven?! She had a Swedish nanny! I never remember her going on vacation without my parents tagging along to help out, or me there to babysit when she wanted a getaway and the Swedish chick had flown the coop to make meatballs and pancakes for somebody else. Show tunes… lots and lots of show tunes. I cannot believe I fell for that.
“Mama! We want more Tootsie Roll Pops and another movie.”
“Pops and movies! Pops and movies!” my angelic children shouted from the back seat.
It wasn’t like we could threaten them with, “We are going to turn this car around, if you don’t stop that racket!”
We were already in Oklahoma. Plus, they never wanted to go on this trip in the first place -- they’d be thrilled to go back home and lounge around the neighborhood pool all summer long.
“All right, all right… Swan Princess again?” I said, my voice sinking, “Wouldn’t you rather look outside the window and see Oklahoma? Look how green it is!"
"Oh-Oh-Oh-OHK-LA-homa where the wind comes sweepin’ down the plains!” trying to razzle and dazzle ‘em with my vibrato, hoping to launch our first family Broadway Musical Tour across the USofA since it had worked like a charm for my sister’s family twenty-five years ago.
“No! Push play, push lay! Two red pops, please.”
I only had two chocolate and one banana flavored Tootsie Roll Pop left.
“Where are the Smarties?” my husband asks nervously, praying for a peaceful drive through a place called Tornado Alley.
“They’re below my seat,” I reveal. “Do you think I should break them out now? We’re not even in Kansas yet.”
"Just do it!” he commanded.
“Who wants Smarties?” I shout.
It just takes one “smarty” in the family to recognize when desperate times call for more candy.
(Next: Tornado Alley wasn’t on the Best of Broadway Album)