"I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.”
-Robert Louis Stevenson
If I were to select one word as the theme of our road trip, it'd be recalculating, said in the monotonous and robotic female voice of our GPS. Re-CAL-cu-la-ting. Good old, trusty, reliable Claire (as we dubbed our GPS) liked to inform us often that she was recalculating our route. Yeah, yeah, yeah, Claire, we get it. We missed the exit, the turn, the everything! The theme really does fit, not just with the journey but with the destination as well. We have learned to adjust our plans, expectations, moods accordingly. Re-CAL-cu-la-ting. If not, we'd often be sorely disappointed.
The road trip started bright and early on a Saturday morning, the boys strapped in their seats, loaded up with breakfast, loveys, and a buffet of things to keep them entertained. We drove for hours--through the little bit of Minnesota and Wisconsin to get us to Illinois, the longest state in the country, I swear. We stopped when needed (which was often to pee for this pregnant mama) to quickly stretch our legs and burn some energy. But halfway through Illinois the boys had exhausted all their entertainment choices and were getting antsy. We trudged on as long as we could stand and then crashed at a hotel right on the Kentucky border, slightly dejected that we hadn't successfully conquered the Illinois battle. The boys ran and swam and giggled out all their pent up energy before crashing in a hotel bed for the night.
The next morning we did it all over again, stopping for a delicious Waffle House brunch and a tour of Ruby Falls in Chattanooga, and finally reached our destination in South Carolina late that night. My in-laws met us outside and ushered us in carrying the heavy bodies of our dozing children. Finally, the real vacation could begin.
A slow, lazy morning at their gorgeous home, complete with a deck overlooking a private pond, preceded our bustling afternoon touring my father-in-law's work and fishing at his boss' farm. The night was completed with a dinner of our fried catch. The days on the road caught up with us, our moods testy and our fuses short, so we ended it early, waiting in excited anticipation for the remainder of our vacation.