Just Us Girls

Think back on your most memorable road trip.

My family was of modest means, so vacations & trips meant the car, not jets. Most of our vacations were to visit family across the USA – many miles between the SF Bay Area and West Virginia. My mom’s people were in WV, and along the way, we visited my dad’s people in Kansas, St. Louis, and Minnesota. So many memories!

The most memorable road trip, hands down, was the Big Mother’s Day Weekend Road Trip. This trip was HUGE for me because it was the first time I drove a long distance. Fears of getting lost or stranded were abated by “Tom,” the GPS, and having my daughter with me, who actually inherited a sense of direction from someone in the family, not me. It was also HUGE for me to head down the road with my daughter and her daughter to visit my mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, respectively.

The only witnesses to my wrong turns and oops moments were my girls. And Tom. No husbands to make fun of us or unwanted suggestions. Just us girls!

We were only out of the driveway 10 seconds when Tom hollered at us, “Turn the car around!” He was speaking with a Caribbean accent which made him sound panicky. I assured my passengers that Tom just wanted to take a different route to the freeway and he would re-calculate and adjust. I thought.

Caribbean Tom was more stubborn than the other Toms we had guiding us. My daughter picked out Darth Vader Tom, who was cool once we got used to his voice. If he had to recalculate because I ignored him, he would get grumpy – “I find your lack of faith disturbing.”

A small “oooh,” came from the back seat. Even a three-year-old knew we had done something wrong. To try and reassure her, I said, “He’ll get over it.” We all realized how stupid that statement was two seconds later when we drove into the rest area.

Tears were rolling down my face. I was laughing so hard that I could not look at either of my girls. They could hustle faster than I, so they were peeing when I got there. I’m happy to say that we all made it with dry underwear.

After we stretched our legs and got snax out of the vending machine, we were back on Interstate 5 (I-5). If you travel from Northern to Southern California, you can drive almost straight there on I-5. Less chance of getting lost but more chance of falling asleep.

The town of Coalinga will keep you awake with its smell. Its nickname is “cow linger.” We were thankful Mother’s Day was in May and not August.

After leaving Darth Vader at the rest area, we let my granddaughter choose the next Tom to guide us. She liked Carl from the movie, “Sling Blade.” Uh Huh. For some reason, the trip seemed longer, with Carl leading us. Since we only had an hour left on the trip, we listened to happy giggling from the back seat. Carl guided us to my mom’s condo in Laguna Niguel with no trouble. Instead of saying, “you have reached your destination,” like the other guys, Carl says, “You’re here now. Hope nobody’s dead.”

And nobody was.

Road Trip!

Hwy68Sign  I am not excited about a long grueling drive down to Laughlin, Nevada later this week.  Being in a car all day long is hard on my joints, my Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), and my temperament. However, my hubby is doing all the driving, so I can take Dramamine and knit for nine (or twelve) hours.

My current knitting project is time-consuming. Since each row takes me 25 minutes to knit, and there are 6 rows per inch, and I need 5 feet of length…

  1. How long have I been knitting so far, if the project is 35 inches long? (87.5 hours?)
  2. How much time do I have to invest to complete the project? (62.5 more hours?)

While on the road trip it’s possible for me to knit 12 more inches. Right? Please, Math people, help me out here by submitting a comment!!  Thanks!

Hubby is hoping my hands are not up to playing video poker by the time we get there.  CasinoElvisSightingHA!  What have my hands been doing for 87 hours? I’m pretty sure I’m trained and ready to handle some button pushes and handle pulls.

Maybe, if I’m lucky, I’ll see Elvis  😉

Nevada, here I come!


photo credit: Maxmsf via photopin cc
photo credit: raider3_anime via photopin cc

I Love You, Now Go Away!

Yet another NaNoWriMo tale…

Hubby and I took a road trip to Lake Havasu, AZ and spent Thanksgiving with his family. The 80 degree weather was fabulous. We literally drove 12 hours to summer!  Like a devoted writer, I brought the novel on a flash-drive with me. Just in case I had time to myself to kill. And could borrow my Sis-in-law’s computer. (I’m asking Santa for a laptop this year!)

No, I’m not blaming the holiday or the relatives for my word count only increasing 2,000 in that 6-day period. I am a social creature on occasion, and always a dog lover. I could lie and say that Ginger and Gabby “ate my muse”, but I won’t. Our mini-vacation with my siblings-in-law, was full of food, fun and laughter. This may be why my muse became constipated. I suspect jealousy.

My brother-in-law(s) set up a computer for me, in the guest house hubby and I were staying in, so I could keep writing my NaNoWriMo novel.  I’m sure this support and encouragement disturbed hubby greatly.  He had already told me that this first NaNoWriMo adventure should be my last. He (claimed) was worried about my health. Not enough sleep. Not eating right. Blah, Blah, Blah.

I imagine there are a lot of NaNoWriMo widowers and widows about now. Take heart! Only 3-days left of cooking your own meals, having the TV remote all to yourself, sleeping alone, etc.  We miss you too of course, but our focus is on writing and this we do alone. At least I do. So please, do not interrupt us with tidbits of trivia you read in the paper, or telling us your plans for home improvements next year.  We understand your wanting conversation. Just save it for meals and break-time, is all we ask.

Day 94: Earplugs

TV noise and chain saws require industrial ear-plugs. I am not kidding – I really wear them. I’d take a picture, but sweats and no make-up is today’s fashion statement, so just imagine me with an orange foam plug in each ear.  Earplugs only work if hubby is making the noise, because he ignores the fact they are plugging my ears and talks to me anyway.

Once my rhythm is broken it is freaking hard to get it back. Distractions abound in the real world. I often fantasize about having a padded, sound-proofed room, with an inside lock, to write in. I even wonder if I should be tested for Adult ADD, or ADHD.

Today is gloomy and rainy – perfect weather to write.  The week’s errands and grocery shopping are done. Leftovers are thawing.  The wood-burning stove is hot and so is the coffee.  So, why am I not spewing forth oodles of words?

Gloomy and rainy is also the perfect weather for a nap. I think I’ll take one, Lord knows my muse is.