Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Where We Really Want to Go and We'll Walk in the Sun

My mom on one of her adventures. Possibly Bermuda?

So, you know lately I've been talking about taking the girls on that road trip to California, and then the minute I do, the gas prices get all ridiculous and try to stop me. If I were a smarter girl, I'd probably cancel it and just take the girls to the State Fair like we do every year, but I think I'm just going to be fiscally irresponsible and take them anyway.

I love a good road trip. I always have. My mom traveled a lot before she got married, and then she had to settle for driving us around to cool places in Arizona because we were so poor. My big fantasy when I was younger, was that I'd buy a big station wagon when I became an adult and just drive from place to place for the rest of my life. You know, just like the Hulk.

My brother tanning on his '75 Caprice Classic at Papago Park in 1984.

When I was eighteen, my brother, my middle sister and I drove down to see my oldest sister back in Arizona. Back then we drove down in my brother's gigantic Chevy. Now the gas alone would cost us thousands of dollars in that car.

Me and my family, pretty cold and miserable at The Golden Gate Bridge.

The first trip I made to San Francisco was with my family in 1977, I think. I had no idea how cold it was going to be. I also didn't know how much I would love the city when I was older. I lived in San Francisco on and off from 1985 -1988. It was a perfect place to spend my early twenties. I can't wait to show it off to my daughters. I haven't been there in twenty years, so we'll see if it holds up to my memory. I'm pretty sure the dance clubs don't play Gang of Four anymore, do they?

Here's me and my first boyfriend when I lived in Leggett, Ca.

In my trip planning, I've decided not to head up to Mendocino and Humboldt Counties where I lived in 1985, like I originally thought I would. The gas thing has me trimming things up a bit, and I just can't fit it in. Instead we'll go to Yosemite and Sequoia and King's Canyon before we finally head to the Coast and up to San Francisco.

Unfortunately, I'm going to have to let go of my dream of seeing Southern Utah on this trip also. I only have so much time and money. I think we'll be overwhelmed enough with what we're doing.

Stinky at Sylvan Lake in Custer State Park, South Dakota for my fortieth birthday trip in 2005.

My girls have also inherited my wander lust. They love the whole process and are actually pretty great in the car for long stretches. We are an awesome roadtrip crew.

Coadster at Mt Evans in Colorado in 2000.

Coadster has a sense of direction and is an excellent co-pilot. She always makes sure all my food, drink and music needs are met while I drive. Stinky is the one who pushes us to take more risks and do more stuff that Coadster and I might just by-pass for a safer, more mellow option. Which means I may have to ride a rollercoaster with her on the boardwalk in Santa Cruz.

My friend Eggo's husband has been really helpful in the planning of my trip. He left a mysteriously anonymous comment a month back or so, and then asked me about my trip while at the Dublin one night and cleared up my confusion. He has told me of a cool place to stop in Wyoming, which was the only hole in my trip. Now we have amazing points of interest all the way down I-80...Okay, except Nebraska. I'm going to drive through as much of that at night as possible.

Even though it seems a way off, I really need to get cracking and reserve rooms and camping spots and start making lists of all the crap we're going to need. As usual, I'm hoping to stumble over my trust fund before now and the end of July too, so I can thumb my nose at the heinous gas prices.


Mr Atrocity said...

Please please promise me that you'll take a camera and photograph your trip? Surely we all love seeing photographs of journeys?

If you get a chance have a look through Stephen Shore's book, "Uncommon Places". He is a wonderful photographer and teacher who took a series of road trips through the US in the 1970s taking amazing large format photographs as he went.

evil-e said...

Sounds like the thing is coming together.

I might have to start getting info on NoCal myself, the company I work for has locations there and.....in a few months, after I am fully trained....we'll see.

Definitely something for you and the girls to look forward to. Now go get that room and camping spot before its too late.

Remiman said...

Gas prices!!!! Don't get me started. I'm considering riding my bike the ten miles one way to work.

Your trip will be fabulous!

NoRegrets said...

I think you are smart to reduce the number of places you'll go. They will be there in the future. And your itinerary is huge as it is. Makes my wanderlust come out. I've driven across the country 5 times...

Tara said...

I'm glad you're deciding to be fiscally irresponsible for your vacation, because how often can you get around to having one, right? The last road trip I went on was with my friend back in 05 or 06. We flew to Arizona to stay with my brother and his wife, but then my friend rented a car and we drove from Phoenix to Sedona one day. So much fun.

DJSassafrass said...

Hey-seriously call me about AAA help for maps and guides if you need to.

fringes said...

You'll remember the trip for way longer than you'll remember the price of gas. I'm excited for you!

another good thing said...

How exciting! I love doing all the planning and then later figuring out the best time was when you either got lost or lost sight of the plan for a little while.
Take it as it comes- you might be surprised what you find.

laura b. said...

What an awesome post! I am an armchair traveler, I suppose...it is in my heart by never happens. This trip sounds wonderful and I really love the pictures that you posted.

Minyo said...

Hey, I'm delurking. I love your blog. Your trip sounds like fun...hopefully you'll be able to post along the way.

Have you heard of geocaching? if not, google it. It's basically high-tech scavenger hunting. It might help break up the boring drive through Nebraska...and offer some free entertainment for the rest of your trip while you're spending gas money. And also, it's kind of a fun and geeky thing to do.

Poptart said...

How's the gas mileage on your car? Would be great if you could borrow someone's hybrid for the trip. I wonder if the savings in gas costs would cover renting a higher MPG car...

booda baby said...

I'm pretty damned excited about the trust fund. Where do you think it's stashed?

Long_Division said...

You'll be happy to know the husband and I played Gang of Four during our DJ set at a party this weekend.

Churlita said...

Mr Atrocity,

Oh, don't you fret. I will always take a camera with me. You'll see most of what I see.


I was just trying to map out how long it will take me to get everywhere so I'll know what days to reserve rooms and camping space.


I'm so glad I walk to work.


It's still going to be crazy doing what we're doing.


I've never been to Sedona. I hear it's amazing.


I think I finally got it figured out.


I know. And I can always get a 2nd job if I need to when we get back.


Oh, I will. I'm pretty mellow about plans and schedules.


Thanks. I suppose it's not all that far for you to go to a lot of the places we're headed.


Thanks for delurking. I want to add you to the roll as soon as I get my ass in gear to do it.


My mileage is pretty good, and I think it would be cheaper than to rent and then pay for gas.

Booda Baby,

Since it's imaginary, I think it's somewhere in my scary little brain.

Long Division,

That does make me happy. Did you play, "I Love a Man in Uniform"?

Les Q said...

we don't have a lot of black people in oz so its not common to see white and black people in a relationship standing next to each other. mainly it would be white men with indian women. We are starting to get some african refugees so maybe it will change in the future :)