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AlbertJayNock

Writer's Block: Taking it on the road

What was the longest road trip you ever went on? How did you pass the time?


I went on my longest road trip when I was 10 years old and my father packed us all into his  VW camper and took us across the country to see America. We got to see Mount Rushmore, the Grand Canyon, and Yellowstone Park. I'm not much of a traveler, and might have not yet seen these things if it wasn't for Pop.

We also went to Four Corners, where the state lines of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah intersect. I haven't been back, but at the time there was an asphalt lot where the exact point  of interesection was marked. We used to visit my grandmother in Bristol, which straddles Virginia and Tennessee. We got a kick (as only a child can) from going downtown and being in another state by just crossing the street. Of course we got an even bigger kick from this, because we could go through twice as many states in even less time. Somewhere there is a picture of my brother and sister and me in all 4 states at the same time. We were  younger and more flexible back then.

As far as how we passed the time, we sang a lot. "99 Bottles of Beer" was sung quite a bit, but my father changed the lyrics from "take one down, pass it around" to "one of the bottles fell off of the wall". I guess he didn't want us getting any ideas. "Green Grow The Rushes" was another staple. And for some reason, my liberal VW-bus driving college teaching father was fond of Ballad Of The Green Berets, even though we were in the middle of the Vietnam War.

Pop was pretty patient with a bus full of kids (I was the oldest at 10), but we did get on his nerves sometimes. One time we irritated so much it led to the greatest angry dad story ever. We were in Utah, and being particularly fussy and noisy. He stopped the van and said "If  you kids don't settle down, I'm going to turn this van around and go home!". Yes, all fathers have said that at one time or another. But home was in North Carolina. It was probably the most ambitious threat ever made by an irate father, and I was proud to be there when it happened.

Comments

(Anonymous)

I remember when you all went on your cross-country trip!!