We survived! Even better than survived, actually. We had fun. Lots and lots and lots of it. Turns out, the beach is a really fun place to hang out as a family. I wasn’t sure whether building sandcastles and exploring tide pools would be quite as much fun as a parent as I remembered it being as a child, but man, it so is.
To my immense delight, we also managed to survive the drive, though I will admit things got a bit dicey on the way home. Right around Olympia (halfway-ish) the kids started getting a tad feral, engaging in the same hijinks and generalized naughtiness kids the world over have always pulled out when bored on long road trips.
I saw a sign for a Safeway off the freeway and implored Wes to pull over, which he did, though a tad grudgingly. You see, we were having a bit of trouble with Google Maps, who had just informed us that the freeway ahead was a trafficked-up nightmare. I was trying to manage the kids, who were a few miles short of turning our backseat into the Thunderdome, trying to figure out an alternate route to avoid the traffic, doing my best to avoid getting carsick, and also? I had to pee. Irritated husband aside (I’ve never met a man who didn’t mind pulling over for a pit stop on long road trips. Every guy I’ve ever spent long periods of time in the car with has always had a ‘let’s push through and make it in one straight shot’ mentality. Why is that?), Wes pulled over and let his hot mess of a family out of the car.
Once we’d stretched, walked, used the grocery store’s bathroom, and obtained some inappropriate starches (hat tip to Joss Whedon), everyone was back in the car and more or less quiet.
“Thanks for pulling over for a rest stop,” I said to Wes while the kids contentedly crunched on Pringles in the backseat. “I was about to need a new pair of pants and I thought the kids were going to go Mad Max back there.”
“That kind of stuff doesn’t bother me,” he replied, eyes on the road.
I blinked at him. “Wait. What part doesn’t bother you? The peeing all over the car part, or the savage children tearing each other apart?”
He shook his head. “What? No, I just meant I would have just kept driving.”
I’m pretty sure he’s going to stock up on Depends for me and tranquilizers for the kids the next time we have a four hour car trip ahead of us.
Hijinks and upholstery destruction aside, we had a great time. I’ve definitely got the post-vacation blues now. Our home is lovely and all, but it isn’t walking distance to a beach and that, my friends, is just super sad all the way around. Everything should be within walking distance to a beach.
Oh! Hey! There’s the bright side to global warming! Within a few decades, I bet just about everything will be walking distance to a beach! Thanks, fluorocarbons!