Saturday, September 11, 2010
VACATION!! We're gonna have a ball!
Connie Francis sang a song called "Vacation." I know of this song because I'm a terrible speller and my mom looked at me one day and said, "This is how I learned to spell vacation, and played it for me." Till this day when someone say that word, the tune pops into my head.
THAT SAID! I just got back from vacation! Yes sir-ee Bob! Me, the husband and the kid jumped into our old 2001 Red Chevy Cavalier (two door) and set sail on a great adventure that took us from North Eastern Ohio all the way to Sunny Los Angeles California.
We began by discussing National Lampoon's "Vacation" as we headed out on the trip. The 23 month old strapped into his car seat, Laurie Berkner cooing sweetly from our factory direct CD player. Happy family tunes like "Rocketship Run" and a slew of other child friendly songs that are now forever imprinted into my brain.
In the beginning it was funny.
The first hotel we stopped at was in Effingham, Il. and you know what? When you're only 23 months old a hotel room is by far one of the most amusing things you'll ever see. As we tried to get ready for bed, my son ran around the room yelling, "bye-bye!!" over and over. We finally put him into his cage like crib and crawled into bed as he babbled about everything in his own unique language. My husband began to snore and I was fighting laughter but managed to close my eyes long enough that our son gave us and went to sleep - for two hours.
Then he came into bed with us.
Seems the room freaked him out - but let me say. Why is something that is 3'3" tall and about 30lbs... why does it take up so much room???
As the trip progressed we realized the route we were taking was directly next to, and sometimes directly on, the historic Route 66. This has been one of my dreams for a very long time, to fly to Chicago and rent a car to drive down Route 66 all the say to Santa Monica. The trip would take a better part of a month to enjoy all the stops. Restaurants and museums dedicated to a long forgotten era that was quickly replaced by highways and bi-ways, airplanes and all of those luxuries times has offered us.
We stayed on the actual road two times. One time in Santa Rosa, New Mexico which is famous not only for RT 66 but for being the location of The Grapes of Wrath shoot back in the 30's and a place called "The Blue Hole" - scuba diving in the desert. No joke.
Bits of 66 where everywhere. A museum dedicated to historical cars. Two motels that have been standing since the 66 era. A handful of restaurants you can't eat at if you're vegan... ;)
The other place we stopped at was in Oklahoma called Sapulpa. Never underestimate people. Sometimes they can be wonderful and make you a special sandwich that's not on any menu because you're vegan in a state that clearly is not.
As the trip rolled on and times grew tired it got me to thinking. What the hell are we doing? <- that was one of the questions but the other one was much bigger.
What we just did - it once was part of the great America Dream.
Whatever happened to the American Dream?
I've now seen a big portion of this country. I've been way east and I've been way west. Spent some time in the South, both desert climate and the jungles of Louisiana. I've drank on Bourbon Street, partied in the Village, slept in the Hollywood Hills, camped in New Hampshire, walked on Route 66, been stopped in Yuma by border patrol, award a speeding ticked in Illinois, seen the Grand Canyon (way off in the distance) and so many other wonderful things (except the ticket, that was just annoying)
I asked on my Facebook page about the America Dream and was told it was dead - but how can it be? If the dream is dead what is this country?
The United States of America is a dream. It was a dream. It should be a dream for when my boy grows up. So I say it's not dead.
And now I ask you... what is your American Dream? I really want to know. What keeps you going? Why are you here? What were you born to do?
There is a whole lot of hate going on right now, and it scares me a lot, because if we let that hate win... the I guess the America Dream is dead...
I'll have more to say soon - post some pictures of the trip. Tell some stories - because I have a few! But until then, I hope I hear from you!