My sister wasted no time turning the backseat of the rental car into her own personal garbage can.
A few years ago, my family decided to resurrect the family vacation, even though we’re all grown up now. Once a year, the four of us — my mom, dad, sister, and I — set off somewhere together, which is always a good recipe for hijinks ensuing. This was the first year, however, that we really threw it back to old times and did a classic road trip, our vacation of choice when I was growing up.
Quickly, the joys of car traveling with my whole family returned to me — my mom’s sense of direction failed at nearly every turn; my dad pushed his seat all the way back to ensure I had no leg room; and in no time, my sister had turned the backseat we shared into a veritable garbage dump. She also thought it was funny to stick a Goldfish cracker in my mouth while I was sleeping, which made for a confusing and unpleasant sensation in my mouth when I woke up. When I tried to return the favor, my mom threw a fit, claiming that my sister would choke to death and forbidding me from doing it (she had, my sister confirmed when she woke up, wholeheartedly supported her attempts to mess with me).
Ahh, the memories. It’s all those little annoyances that help make road trips what they are. (At least, that’s what I told myself when my parents insisted on taking a route that was clearly marked as closed, then became shocked 20 minutes later when the road was blocked off and we had to turn around.)
If you’re road-tripping it with a car full of adults like we were, well, you’re on your own, but if you’ve got young’uns in tow, check out my story for The Family Groove on the top tips from parents for family road adventures. It’ll help make your vacation as smooth as possible. But don’t worry — there will still be spilled crayons, inconveniently needed bathroom breaks, and a chorus of “are we there yets?” No road trip would be complete without a few bumps, and that’s half the fun.