July 24, 2018
We just got back home from a 12 day, 5000 mile road trip. One that 6 months ago my entire family nagged me to let us fly instead of drive. Let’s face it, we are so busy that I don’t get to actually spend much time with my kids so I was looking forward to some quality time on the road with them. We went on this trip to watch one of my 6 nephews get married. When my sister told me he was getting married I almost told her no way. How could this be happening? This is the little boy who thought we was Harry Potter but couldn’t pronounce his Rs so called himself Ha-We and once answered on his homework that milk came from the store instead of from cows. They moved when he was young so that’s how I always picture him. Now I watched him get married. I wanted to tell him “Congraduwations” and almost looked for the Sharpied lighting bolt scar on his forehead. How can a boy who will always be an 8 year old to me get married?
So while the rest of my Facebook friends were vacationing in Hawaii, Costa Rica, Italy, and other exotic places, were were road tripping to Kentucky. To make it more exciting, we planned to head to Iowa for a week after. Giddy up. On the road when I swiped though my social media I saw pictures of my friend’s views out of airplane windows and videos of zip lining through the jungle while I was stuck in a car that smelled like feet and milk farts for days.
I didn’t want to take extra time off of work which meant we’d have to pull an all nighter to get there on time. I don’t see what the problem is with that. I sleep just fine in the car while my husband drives through the wee hours. We set off on our trip driving through the night like we were on the run. My husband asked me to drive around 2am to which I responded yes and then instantly fell asleep for 2 hours. He loves me and I don’t know why.
Driving 30 hours straight is not without adventure. Every stop involved bladder busting sodas, $5 candy, salty heart attack inducing snacks, and a fly in the car. I was happy with my cheese and beef jerky being that I’ve sworn off sugar for the time being. I held cheese like it was a candy bar and bit right off the brick. I also drank a ton of water, and continuously needed to pee, like immediately, and sometimes we had to stop places you only see on an episode of Cops. Especially in the Ozarks at an all-night mini mart. As soon as we parked, swamp people came dragging out of the woods like the Thriller video. I ran into the bathroom before I peed my pants while my son was busy asking a lady with “Die” tattooed on her left knuckles and “Death” on her right which was spelled “Deaf” where the best place around there to go Noodling was. I figured the tattoo artist misunderstood her being that she was missing every third tooth. I had to decide whether I would protect my son or use the bathroom and clearly I chose not to pee my pants. The bathroom wall had peep holes drilled in them in surprisingly conspicuous places so I just did a small finger wave toward the hole at the creep that was for sure watching me. At this point I didn’t even care. We loaded up on our junk food and got back in the car as a 60 year old Eminem look-alike walked out of the mini mart, ripped his shirt off then took a Kiss mask out from his butt crack and put it on. He swaggered over to his car which looked like it was recently in a demolition derby, windshield shattered, and sped off with his head stuck out the window like Ace Ventura. I decided that a dental hygienist’s job there must be cake being that the whole town put together might have enough teeth for a full set.
We arrived in Kentucky just in time to shower and change. I successfully removed the half eaten lollipop stuck in my hair and rogue french fry from my bra which was a mystery since I didn’t eat any. It is extremely humid there so my hair was on point to make Weezey Jefferson jealous. I painted the girls nails and toes while driving so they looked like a 3 year old was offering mani-pedis. We were tired and wrinkled but we were there. On time.
After a few days in Kentucky we headed to Iowa. There we had adventures with mosquitos big enough to put a collar on and a near miss with a tornado. I’ll take earthquakes and rattlesnakes any day compared to that. As my friend and I drove towards the low hanging black swirling clouds an emergency alert rang out of her phone so loud I jumped in my seat and hit my head on the ceiling of her car. I looked over to see her reaction to the alert and she just shrugged and said “Eh, it’s fine”. Like this happens all of the time. Since my only experience with a tornado is watching the movie Twister I was looking around her car for something to use to tie myself to a pole. I was ready to jump out of her moving car any minute with my purse strap fastened around my waist. Luckily, we ended up turning away and headed home shortly after.
The rest of the trip was relaxing and uneventful. We laughed a lot and made great memories. I’d do it all over again to spend that time with my family. It’s always a good time when the Tart’s go on an adventure and I can’t wait until the next one.