Living Retired #163- Diary of a Summer Road Trip
DIARY OF A SUMMER ROAD TRIP
From ‘The Bureau of What The Hell Were We Thinking?’….
At last. It’s September.
In suburbs across North America parents are pulling their car back into the driveway. Finally, the family road trip is over for another year.
The car hasn’t even come to a stop. The back door opens, the kids leap out– and dash as fast as Hussein Bolt to their friends house!
Mom and Dad shake their heads in bewilderment and utter the famous phrase: “NEVER, NEVER, NEVER WILL WE DO THAT AGAIN!”
The family summer road trip isn’t measured in days, it is measured in hours.
You’re only an hour out of town. Already the sandwiches Mom packed have been eaten. In the backseat the kids have spilled their juice boxes. Your son hangs a mozzarella cheese string from his nostril. They aren’t fighting over who sits in the front seat; instead your daughter screams, “Mom, he’s breathing my air!”
It’s the second hour and Dad pulls the car back into the driveway. He forgot to turn off the main water valve.
It’s the third hour. Finally you are where you were supposed to be three hours ago. Everything is going as expected– Mom says, “Did I unplug the curling iron?”
Dad groans and grits his teeth, “How am I supposed to know? It’s your curling iron, not mine. Women!”
Ten minutes later Dad calls the neighbour on his iPhone. “Hey Jim, can you go over to the house and check that we unplugged the curling iron in the bathroom?” He gives the instructions how to turn the security alarm off.
Twenty minutes pass. Dads iPhone rings. All he can hear is the ear piercing blare of the home alarm!
“It’s the Police department calling. We’ve arrested your neighbour for break and enter. What’s the code to turn your security alarm off?”
Its the fourth hour of the family road trip. It’s quiet in the car. The kids are plugged into their electronic devices. Mom fell asleep– as soon as she said she’d help navigate.
Suddenly! Dads eyes stare down at the dashboard: the ‘Service Engine’ light glows.
Dad has a HCM: ‘Holy Crap Moment!’ He doesn’t dare tell his wife because she nagged him for two weeks to service the car before the trip.
It’s the fifth hour. Dad pulls the car back onto the interstate. The engine is fine after all. The kids went to the bathroom at the gas station; Mom complained about the filth in the bathroom, and told the kids 10 times: “Wash your hands!”
An hour later and the kids electronic devices aren’t working. The batteries are dead! Dad mutters under his breath as he speeds up. He suggests, “Let’s turn on the radio.”
Half an hour passes and the kids are arguing about what station to listen to. Mom and Dad are arguing with them: “Can’t we turn the volume down?”
Soon Mom and Dad are arguing about the air conditioning. Mom gets her way by saying, “If you keep it this cold you’ll have to pull over again because I’ll have to pee!”
An hour later, you’re at a service station. Mom goes in to pee. She comes out complaining about the filthy washroom.
One thing everyone agrees on: that’s the last family road trip, ever!
Until next summer.
Upcoming Living Retired keynote presentation, ‘I Don’t Have Wrinkles, I Have Laugh Lines’ September 13, 2016: Woodstock Probus Club, Woodstock, Ontario.
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Gary Chalk, a baby boomer is enjoying retirement. Instead of watching his investments he muses about what he sees Living Retired. To receive Living Retired each week, to ‘unsubscribe’ or to book Gary’s keynote presentation ‘I Don’t Have Wrinkles, I Have Laugh Lines’ visit http://LivingRetired.press.
EXCITING NEWS: Gary Chalk now writes for After Fifty Living. Visit AfterFiftyLiving.com/activity.