So we're off to see our Cousin, the wonderful Cousin of all.
This is the longest vacation that we've ever taken as a family -- BioMom is "off" of work for two weeks (i.e. not in the office, which means both something and nothing all at the same time) -- and the first road trip in our lives as a family (and as a couple).
We're taking the "Northern Route" to Out West where Cousin is currently residing, taking four or so days to get to Cousin's, a week or so AT Cousin's, and the "Southern Route" home along which we'll stop and see my family in Nebraska.
Today was Day One of travel and as BioMom put it, we expected a 62% day and got a 98%day!
I shouldn't jinx myself by saying that before I've slept a full night. The only reason I'm up now is because BioMom effed up the AC in the room and I woke up on a pool of my own bodily fluid (not the good kind). But really, that aside, it was a great day.
We got on the road after only one retracing of our path back to the homestead (we had only gone 9 blocks, coffee already in hand and $75 already spent in fueling BioMom's BEHEMOTH of a car (if you're looking for someone to blame for us being in Iraq, look no further. Halfway here I had to use the megaphone from the driver's seat to ask the kids if they were doing alright and needed anything), before I realized that I had forgotten a cellphone charger and the actual PHYSICAL map--no GPS or on-the-road-Internet for THIS gal) at approximately 11:30 a.m. I actually made an appointment to get my hair cut this morning -- the departure day -- knowing that we cannnot physically get out of the house on a Saturday as a family prior to noon, so there'd be no early worm phenomenon for us. No conflict of interests on that front. We arrived after only ten thousand "are-we-there's-yet" and "how-many-minutes-lefts" (in the face of literal hours as if just using the term "minute" will make it so) in Mitchell SD, home of the Corn Palace, at around 5, swam in their darling pool where Big fell in love with the slide that circled out of the building and dumped you back into the pool with a little splash, ate pizza poolside (eff weight-watchers for now), got kids in bed despite being surrounded by a hotel full of toddlers screaming with dark circles under their eyes while roaming the halls in their swimsuits only just on their way to the pool at eight and nine p.m., without seeming awareness nor protest from our own, by eight with only a few incidents including our boy throwing his sippy cup off the second floor of the poolroom in a fit of rage over BioMom assuming that he was small enough to warrant a sippy cup (in public, I suspect) in the first place (it narrowly missed hitting some kid's head). Neither kid slept in the car despite a dose of dramamine (for Eight, this was a necessity to prevent puking in said Behemoth, but for Big, it was sheer hope and no, we're not opposed to drugging the kids for a little P&Q.)
We're actually mimicking a trip that Cousin and I took with my parents when we were Eight's age or so, a trip that I remember fondly. Tomorrow the Corn Palace and then on to explore the Badlands.
Look for daily reports pending Internet service (BioMom can't get her wireless highway card to work and is, I suspect, experiencing a bit of an internal meltdown about it, but is keeping it well to herself).
Here's to all of those anti-gay marriage folks out there -- you can't get any more All-American than a trip across South Dakota, two kids in tow, with stops at the Corn Palace, Wall Drug, the Badlands and Mount Rushmore, nose picking jokes and souvenier swag included.