Friday, June 6, 2008

Where' the Vacation?

I love summer...hands down, my favorite time of year. (Seems to me that I've confided that before...) And I don't know why, but for some reason, summer always conjures up memories of my childhood. Among my favorites, are the snapshots in my mind of countless family vacations. When I was young, my parents were both school teachers. Obviously we weren't wealthy, but we lived a good life and I have wonderful memories of trapezing around the country with my parents, my older brother, my little sister, and usually our great Aunt Jewell.

Because of their school schedules, every summer we were off on great trips. (Remember, summer was three whole months back then!) Like many families at the time, we'd fold down the back seat of the station wagon ("Old Gold" our shiny, gold metallic wing-tipped wagon) and spread out the sleeping bags. The cooler was filled with drinks and sandwiches and was wedged against the back window. Our pillows resting against the back of the second seat, my brother and I would stretch out and sleep for hours on the road. Come on, after you've spent 30 minutes searching for license plates that represent all 50 states, what else are ya gonna do? Oklahoma....Oklahoma....Oklahoma....Arkansas!!! (People, we're talking 30 years before the invention of the trusty old Gameboy!)

While we didn't hit every state, we racked up the miles in "Old Gold" (and "Black Beauty" after her.) Yes, the cars of my childhood had names and it always seemed to make the trips even more exciting. Like you were taking another friend along for the ride! Gas was a whopping .36 a gallon. 1972...before the Arab Oil Embargo. (No, I don't remember that, I had to look it up!) Every summer, the question was never "if" we were going, but rather, when and where. Beaches, mountains, big cities, historical towns, battlefields, museums and amusement parks...stopping at every great restaurant, distillery and brewery along the way!

My, how things have changed:

---Summer has shrunk to only 10 weeks and JB is away for a good portion of that this year.

---Everyone must wear a seat belt at ALL times while traveling in a car so I can't sleep on the road like I use to. Don't ya remember standing in the seat next to your parents and having your mother stick her arm out to catch you when she hit the brakes? I'm dating myself, but man, those were the days!

---Oklahoma has 5,000 different options for license plates so what is the real point in trying to identify the other measly 49 states. And,

---Gas is almost FOUR flippin' dollars a gallon and we're still workin' off that little jaunt we took at Christmas.

Even though we are sticking pretty close to home this summer, we are fully booked with fun and excitement. (I know you are on the edge of your seat in anticipation of our next adventure, right?) If the storms ever stop and we can get the sun to shine, we'll have pictures on Sunday. Have a great weekend!


David, Shelly and the girls said...

give me a call. I lost your number. 474-7221 first birthday party for our little man on Sunday ...this proves he is the sixth!! He WILL have a cake!!!

Julie said...

We had a mint green station wagon. And what were seat belts. I remember crawling from the back of the car to the front on the highway. Thanks for a trip back memory lane.

Enjoy your summer!!!

Scott and Leslie said...

I loved the description! I could totally visualize your whole experience! Have fun this summer!

Kim said...

My mom and dad still put their arm out to catch me. Which makes me laugh because 1, it wouldn't help, I am a bit big for that now. And 2, why would I be jumping up and down between the seats...I am thirty-good grief years old!

Good memories!

Kim said...

Ok, I just read my comment...I forgot to put the 7 on the end of the thirty...wishful thinking!

rachel said...

Heck yeah, family vacations! There was nothing better. We used to have a maroon station wagon. I don't even know if that car actually had seat belts or not.

I still prefer driving over flying, when possible. Getting there is half the fun, right? We've stuck pretty close to home for the last couple of years. First, saving money for the adoption, and now gas prices. Good grief, the gas prices.

Adoption Timeline

  • 01/01/08 - Home at Last
  • 12/24/07 - G & R
  • 12/18/07 - Travel
  • 12/7/07 - Travel Packet/VISA Authorization
  • 12/06/07 - I-600 Approval
  • 11/16/07 - I-600 Received for Review
  • 09/26/07 - Referral
  • 03/23/07 - Log in Date
  • 02/23/07 - Dossier to Vietnam
  • 02/08/07 - Dossier to Agency
  • 08/08/06 - Switched to Vietnam Program from China Program