Geek (verb): Be or become extremely excited or enthusiastic about a subject, typically one of specialist or minority interest
We’ll skip the nouns … socially inept, blah blah blah, unfashionable, blah, blah, blah, bites heads off chickens, blah, blah, blah …
If you know me, you know how I love to throw myself into things guns blazing. Why not? Here we are, isn’t it great?? Over the years I’ve been able to surround myself with like minded people who follow the same philosophy - which explains a lot about my running, work, hobbies, whatever. I love it and they do too. It’s fun and life is short.
So my kids are on Spring Break. I wasn’t able to take too much time off due to other vacation schedules at work but I offered them a long weekend. Either we can head up to the mountains and ski or we can configure some sort of road trip to the middle of nowhere.
Guess what they picked?
Have I mentioned that my kids are a ridiculous lot like me? Have I mentioned that I think they are AWESOME???
Ideas circling like little satellites in my mind I mentioned what I was considering to my oldest sister, Susan. Boom, she took time off and was merrily on board.
So here is the plan:
Up before the sun and we are going to New Mexico - or as we call it:
Operation Tacky Roadside Attractions!!!
I have very, very fond memories of our road trips with my family as a kid. We would drive from Tucson to Los Angeles … endless asphalt and desert. Lunch in Yuma at the McDonalds with the ugly people (we weren’t particularly polite kids), freaking out about the sand dunes where ‘Return of the Jedi’ was filmed, the stone house in the middle of nowhere, The Cazbon Dinosaurs (remember Pee Wee’s Big Adventure?), The World’s Tallest Thermometer. And then to grandma’s house for off the chart good food and my insane family. Later up the coast to Monterey, Redding, Portland, right hand turn to Montana. And it would be hot, and we kids would be whiny, dad would be put out from the ceaseless bathroom breaks, and I would inevitably get road sick forcing us to pull over so I could barf. Mom and dad would have supreme control over the radio … oh, what bliss when the walkman came out, but to this day if I hear The Statler Brothers or The Oak Ridge Boys I have an uncontrollable need to hop in the car and drive somewhere cool.
I love being on the road. I love driving. I love the journey. I love the mess, the plans gone wrong, the unexpected surprises (for better or worse). I love that a bunch of people are being stuck together and have to make the best of it.
I love this weekend and it hasn’t even happened yet.
And so do Susan and the kids. They are SO excited. For what? To drive hours and hours and hours and see …
An Electric Chair
The Shoe of the World’s Tallest Man
A little homage to Breaking Bad (this one’s for me)
The Very Large Array
The Taeko Giants/ Sparky’s BBQ
The White Sands Missile Range
The World’s Largest Pistachio
Tucumcari and all it’s neon spender on Route 66
And whatever the heck else we find along the way.
There will be rest stops. There will be countless miles of nothingness. There will be cheesy photo ops. There will be diner food. There will be books on tape, music (including show tunes, ABBA, and Neil Diamond outside of the really good stuff), and podcasts. There will be roadside geology. There will be board games. The will be insufferably bad jokes and puns. There will be fights. There will be bad smells. There will be mistakes.
“But why think about that when all the golden lands ahead of you and all kinds of unforseen events wait lurking to surprise you and make you glad you're alive to see?” Jack Kerouak 'On the Road'