♦Welcome to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop!♦
You’re going on a road trip: where are you headed? With who?
What are your snacks? Music? Plans?
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The idea of a road trip still gets me thrilled to this day. Family road trips were a lot of fun, and we’re still very close, so the memories are great ones. We never flew anywhere, we always took the car. My dad wanted the freedom of having our own car with us, so we could off resort, or explore without concern. It also saved a lot of money in those days, when renting and flying were more luxury expenses. The first time I went in an airplane was to Ireland in 2000. Yup! My first flight was 5 hours overseas! We took off at night over New York City with a full moon. It could not have been more perfect. (That trip even inspired a script out of me.)
Planning out what I would bring and the music I listened to along the way was important. It helped keep me from getting over excited as a kid. It passed the time, and it focused my anxious mind elsewhere, without taking too much away from the positive anticipation. You see, if let to think too much, I’d inevitably start thinking of all the negative and fearful things that can ruin a trip! My mom did enough of that for all of us.
Back in the day, I had a tape player (Yup, this SONY Walkman). That meant that I had to have a whole bag just for my cassettes. Of course I would bring mix tapes! That was the go to. However, I had favorite albums on tape, which I couldn’t leave behind. I would stack them up and start the prep work. Did I need the whole album? That depended on how far we were going. Driving to Florida was a 2-day affair. We’d spend the wee hours of the morning getting out of New York. The rest of the first day would get us to South Carolina. It could get mind numbing! So, having plenty of things to do was important.
I couldn’t read on trips. Try as I might, I would get car sick every time. If I read, I had to only do so for a few minutes at a time and stop or the trip was going to get mighty awful real quick. I do mean a few minutes–couple pages, maybe a chapter, and put it down before I got so nauseated I needed a car stop. You know how unfortunate that was on epic long drives, when you had nothing to do but sit there. Thankfully, I could watch the beautiful countryside and listen to my music without a problem.
We talked. We would talk about what we were planning to do when we got there. Those talks included stops we would make along the way. Then, we’d talk about the road construction workers being ‘doozers‘ and not to look at them. They wanted you to look, so don’t look. Thankfully, I was also a car person, so I would check out the vehicles on the road. Checking out the different state plates. Looking for state plates from home was another distraction. The stops were really welcome. Holy boredom.
Snacks were a major part of keeping from dying of dire boredom along the way, too. I would save up my coins and go buy a ton of candy and snacks to bring. That could get problematic in a hot car. We didn’t have air conditioning in earlier cars, and going south in late spring meant melting chocolate. Kids don’t think much about that in the planning of what they want to eat, so I wound up with melted messes on occasion. It was actually quite delicious regardless. Other snacks were the usual chips and pretzels.
My mom would pack a cooler, which I should have put my chocolate bars in, except that I probably needed my own big cooler! Mom cam from severe poverty, and packing food was a comfort to her that we just never understood. Part of a road trip was stopping for lunch and dinner along the way. As kids, me and my brother didn’t always see the enormous expense that was for a young family.
The trips I am talking about took place in the 1980s and 1990s. Thus, the music was your popular 80s and 90s fare. Madonna, REM, the early pop rap, classic rock, Depeche Mode, 2nd Wave, and so on… The food was Pizzarias, Doritos, whatchamacallit bars, Reese’s, blow pops, charms pops, 5th avenues… I have always been a snack person.
Mom, however, planned well. Submarine sandwiches were made fresh from our portable refrigerator, and we’d enjoy a mobile lunch as we pushed hard to the finish line for that day. Us kids wanted McDonald’s of course, and eventually we would get that on day 2 or the way home. My mom hated it! That food was awful. I didn’t realize how awful fast-food is until my later twenties when I had enough of the stomach upset from it.
If I took a road trip today, I’d take my Mom and Dad, because we always have fun, and I want to show my daughter that fun. If not them, or my Brother, then my Best Friend. The music hasn’t changed much. I am a lover of trance, trap, rap, classic rock, new age, and so much more. My phone holds so much music, we’d be set for weeks. It’s all organized into mood lists, dates lists, favorites, and lifetracks. Anyone for car dancing to Copa Cabana?
Where would we go? I am keen on getting to the American West, particularly Montana. That would be an amazing drive, and I might prefer the train ride, so I can do photography along the way–then again, the convenience of my own car would allow me time to just pull over and shoot at my leisure. My poor daughter would be so damn bored!
Maybe we should just stick to Disney for for now?
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