There’s nothing I find more enjoyable than loading the truck bed with enough personal items from our house to ensure that if we came back and Lord forbid something had happened to our home that we could survive with what was packed by my lovely wife. If she could fit the custom designed kitchen table into the back seat, I’m sure that would be a part of our road trip rituals.
What is funny is every time you think, ok I have everything meticulously placed and have squeezed the last bag into a crevice that only it would fit, a new bag or cooler appears out of the garage door. Almost as if these items were dropping from the sky.
Another one that gets me every time is, ok babe I have everything packed and we are ready to go. One of our children decides that their life may not continue if they can’t have that favorite toy that is in their personal bag that is the closest to the cab underneath every other bag that has been thrown in. Reluctantly, I agree that the trip may start off on the wrong foot if their wish isn’t granted. Who wants to hear a three-year-old screaming, “I want my Doc McStuffin’s Phone” for thirty-five miles?
Finally, we are off and my wife volunteers to drive some of the trip to allow me some time to nap, scroll social media or maybe she really wanted someone else to referee the boxing match in the back seat. A twelve, four and three-year-old in the back seat of a pick up truck might resemble a cage match featured on WWE Wrestlemania. Your breath may or may not have come close to my side of the vehicle, allow me to scream for four and a half minutes. I want my cup and now that I have it, I realize the flavor Gatorade is not exactly what I wished for. Allow me to cry for a few minutes. Now, two are crying and they are trying to outdo the other to claim the trophy for the loudest squeals. During this time the twelve-year-old is now whining because he can’t concentrate on the Clash of Clans app on his phone that he has played for the entirety of the trip.
Once this has calmed down, I realize that the vehicle is moving from the solid double lines in the middle of the pavement to the single line near the side of the road and back and forth. If police were behind us, surely a field sobriety test would be in our future. As I glance to the drivers side my wife is fidgeting with hair that is now in her face, the seat is not exactly how she would like and the radio is either too loud or not loud enough according to how loud the children are.
Little did we realize in the midst of all the chaos there was a small-town police officer approaching from the opposite direction. My wife thinks that speed limit signs are merely suggested. When he approached the window and mentioned she was driving seventeen miles per hour over the speed limit, she must have given the young man in his early twenties some kind of look of desperation. As he returned with the license, insurance and registration in his hand, he looked to her and said please just slow down Mrs. Rainey. Might I mention that each time I’ve been pulled over whether for driving one mile per hour over the speed limit or twenty, I pulled away with a citation in hand.
What has been on my mind over the past few weeks is our time on this earth is short. Most of these scenarios could prove stressful and end in heated discussions amongst those involved. One day we will miss having our children in our vehicle when we leave for vacation. I guess we could look forward to uncontrollable body functions as we drive down the road or making sure our false teeth don’t disengage while hitting a pothole in the road. But for now, let’s cherish these times with each other. Even in the midst of major mayhem.
As you can tell this is one of our many road trip selfies.