I have ended the journey of finding a Tuesday theme. The Tuesday theme will be whatever the hell I want to write about. If you and your OCD can’t deal with this, skip Tuesday and come back for Character Wednesday.
Two days ago I returned from a road trip with my daughter. Shortly, we will be setting out for, yet another, trip. (Just in case any of you have the bright idea of robbing my house while I’m gone, don’t. I have set traps that will light you on fire and feed your crispy body to a pit of hungry alligators.) I don’t know if you have spent any significant amount of time in a small box with a six year old, but if you haven’t, consider yourself blessed by the gods. Riding in a car with a six year old is like being Google. My daughter is the single most inquisitive being on the planet. “Mom, why is the sky blue?” “Mom, what’s on top of the clouds?” “Mom, what’s more powerful, fire, earth, wind or water?” “Mom, why can’t cows talk?” “Mom, why are books made from paper?” “Mom, how do they make paper?” Samantha asked every single one of these questions, and a thousand more, on our five hour drive home Sunday. I’m 98% positive that Benadryl was invented by a mother with four kids under the age of ten on a cross country road trip. While I am often stunned by the questions Samantha poses, I would really like five minutes of quiet once every five years.
I provide my child with enough entertainment on the road to hold a stadium full of teenagers hopped up on Red Bull and Pixie Stix captivated. She has DVDs, CDs, books, coloring supplies, toys, hand-held video game consoles, car games, the entire cast of Disneyland, a circus, Chris Angel and treats which I replenish every time the car slows down enough for me to jump out at a gas station. All this distraction works, for the first five miles. After that it’s an endless barrage of are-we-there-yets and I-have-to-pees. And it’s not just my kid. On our most recent trip we caravanned with my three brothers and their kids. At our first gas stop one of my brothers jumps out of his car and stomps over to mine like someone had pissed in his Cheerios. He points at me and says, “You’re taking Lexy.” Lexy is my five year old niece. She has more energy than the Fukushima nuclear power plant. Naturally I told him hell to the no. Why would I willingly triple the chaos in the backseat of my car? When we pulled away from the gas station, my car was heavy one five year old. Have you ever seen two tropical storms merge to form a massive hurricane on the Weather Channel? That’s pretty much what happened in my car when we added tropical storm Lexy to tropical depression Samantha.
I know, you’re asking why would I subject myself to such torture over and over? I do not know. I’m convinced my brain secretes a chemical that makes me forget the horrendous trips of the past. Or maybe I just fool myself into thinking this trip will be different. It doesn’t really matter why I do it, the fact is I do and will continue to do until my child is old enough to travel alone or I fulfill my promise of leaving her by the side of the road if she doesn’t remember to use her inside voice.