First Vacation in Five Years!

As a child my family, without fail, took a two week long trip during July or August.  We packed the car up and hit the road.  We went south to California a few times. We hit New Mexico and Arizona.  We hit Yellowstone National park, the Grand Canyon and the Painted desert on many occasions.  Every few years we were obligated to trek to Utah for family reunions.  I was raised Pentecostal, but my father’s side are all Mormon.  I hated those trips.  My idea of a good time is not sitting in a cramped hot stuffy church in Utah on the 4th of July.  So hot, in fact that they had to pass out ice cream and Popsicles to keep the attendants from getting heat stroke.

I loved the trips, other than the family reunions portion.  I loved the idea of getting in a car and watching the land pass you by.  I still like traveling in a car, too bad I fall asleep on most trips.  It kind of soothes me and lulls me to sleep.  I have had that issue since I was pregnant back in 1992.

I have never had the funds to go on a trip with my kids.  The only thing we ever did, was to camp in Capital forest most of one summer when I was unemployed.   Twice in my life I have taken a trip to the one place that has fascinated me, my whole life, New York City.  That was a dream come true.  To actually get to go see it, to feel it, to live it.  I love the noise, the dirty, the uninviting concrete of a city.  I love the idea that it can be dangerous.  I also love the idea that no matter what I can get back.  Public transit, taxi’s and the like are all factors in my love for a city.

This year I am taking a whole week off.  Starting next Wednesday until the following Tuesday.  Richard has his girls up from California.  I have several things I thought would be fun, but it is their time, so they get to choose, I can only suggest.  So far I am hearing that they want to head to my dad’s to ride horses.  We have to figure out a day.  I know Friday is the Dead Baby Downhill, I have ridden this since 2008.  I think this is my 4th year. It is a crazy ride, full of drunks and good times.  I thought Richard was going to take his girls early in the night and then get them home before the real debauchery started.  He has gone with his gut and decided it was too adult for them.  I am torn, I would like them there, I think they would love the rides operated by bike parts, but yes, 1500 drunk in one area is a bit much for youngsters.  Oh maybe this year I will be able to actually see the Bike Jousting.  I always crash out before that starts.

I have a free sail anytime I want to use it.  I am thinking that we can do that while the girls are here, so they get a chance to go on a sailboat.  Richard wants no part of the heeling boats.  I know that light wind will prevent that.  I was thinking we would do this Monday, since my next classes start at 6 that night.  He can just drop me off there and then I can take class and bike home.

I hear they want to go on the new Ferris wheel.  How exciting, I have a feeling that will happen on my bike ride night.  I also thought seeing King Tut exhibit would be fun, and maybe renting some bikes to ride along a trail.  We shall see, we have 7 days of adventure, well minus one night where I will be in a drunken bike ride.

Although this vacation is nothing like the ones I took as a child, I feel like they will be fun and worthy ventures.  We close the vacation with the annual block party.  Although I suspect Richard will be spending that night with his parents.  Maybe they will join us in our hood.

All in all, I am quite jealous of his girls.  You see my ex spends no time doing things with his kids.  He plops them in front of the TV with a movie or video games.  He has no imagination and no desire to take them places.  Even before I knew Richard he took his girls to all sorts of great day trips.  They have taken a trip to the Olympic National Rainforest, the beach, Emerald Downs to watch horse races, and so many other day trips.  I cannot imagine how much they enjoy and love their father.  I wish my ex was a better father.  You see, aside from making sure your kids are taken care of financially, you should as a non-residential parent, take time to make your visits special.  Even if it means gluing macaroni to paper all afternoon.  Make your time count, because as they get older they choose not go see you.  My son has not spent anytime with his dad in 3 years.  This truly saddens me.


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