ROAD TRIP: JUST ME AND THE KID
A few weeks ago, my Dad and Stepmom invited my son and I to come visit them at their ranch house just outside Santa Barbara in an area called Los Olivos. The drive from Los Angeles, depending on traffic, can take anywhere from 2 hours to 4 hours.
The day we drove, we hit traffic.
And there was rain.
And in LA rain means the world is coming to an end and no one knows how to operate motor vehicles.
And 4.5 year olds don’t care that Mommy can’t see 5 feet in front of her and can’t change the song on the iPod so easily or turn around to see what level you’re on in Angry Birds.
So off to grandmother’s house we went….
About 10 minutes into the ride, my head started to swirl. How was I going to make it, seriously. SERIOUSLY. We weren’t even at the freeway yet and the “Are we there yet…. I’m uncomfortable….I need a snack….Explain the theory of relativity….” had already begun.
Here were some of my thoughts…
Why did I not stop at Starbucks first? I would kill for Venti drip. Or a Diet Coke. Or a shot of tequila.
Wow. I’m lucky that I live in California. Driving alongside an ocean is not the worst thing in the world. I could be looking at nothing.
“Jonah, look at how beautiful the water is. Can you believe we get to drive right next to the Pacific Ocean???? Pretty cool, huh?”
“I’ve seen the Ocean before, Mommy.”
Thank god for the invention of iPads, iPhones, and mobile devices in general. Though I should be playing a game of “I Spy” or “My Father Owns a Grocery Store,” I do so appreciate the strong battery life of said device and its ability to keep my son entertained.
I wish this car came with a barista.
Aaaaaaaaaaaand, he sleeps. Thank goodness. When he wakes up I hope to be at least half way there.
Crap. He has all the snacks in the back with him. Lucky jerk.
We’re almost there. Lots of lush land… horses and cattle….
“Look, sweetheart! See the farm? See the cows?”
“Honey, look up from the iPad. Isn’t it beautiful?”
“You already showed me cows.”
That’s all I got, kid. That’s all I got.
While driving, somehow I manage to “serve” him a turkey and Swiss on a Kaiser roll…. Like MacGyver, I’ve strategically fastened the paper around it and covered his lap with his blankie, which will serve as a table clothe/napkin and will then end up smothering his face and mine later tonight…. Right after it’s dragged across the floor of the bathroom.
We arrive. At least only one of us is exhausted and hungry.
As I get out of the car and un-strap his car seat belt he says, “That was fun, Mommy. When are we driving again? Tomorrow?”
I yell inside, “Hey, Dad. Is there a Starbucks nearby?!??!”