We’ve made it nearly 1,500 miles through five states in five days, and so far the family vacation has been a blast, ticks notwithstanding. I was worried about pulling off this itinerary with two relatively little kids, but they have been awesome. I mean really, truly, exceptional. I’m bragging on them while I can because the trip home — 18 hours of driving in two days — will be brutal.
Interesting moments of the last few days include:
- Getting a Turkish-style bath in Hot Springs, Arkansas
- Eating at an awesome dive bar/burger joint in Hot Springs where the regulars greeted us as welcome guests
- Watching my 8-year-old son battle wits with a docent at The Hermitage in Tennessee (Guide: How do you think they made this color of paint for the walls? Son: They used materials from the plantation grounds. Guide, amazed: That’s correct.)
- Seeing Trisha Yearwood perform at The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville
- Missing the last third of Trisha’s set because my daughter had a nosebleed
- Watching Corvettes roll off the assembly line in Bowling Green, Kentucky
- Hiking through a section of Mammoth Cave, and checking off a second national park for the trip
- Holding my daughter during the extended lights-out portion of the cave tour, a time that was really, freakily, utterly black
- Realizing after the black-out portion of the tour that a middle-aged woman had had a particularly smelly accident in her pants
- Feeling gratitude that I was not said middle-aged woman
- Resisting the urge to mention this commercial after said accident
- Trying White Castle sliders for the first time after our cave tour
- Throwing away White Castle sliders after two bites
- Wondering if lady on cave tour had eaten White Castle sliders prior to tour
- Checking into a very ritzy, posh, chic hotel in, of all places, Evansville, Indiana
- Paying about a third of what one would expect to pay at an equivalent hotel in a major city
- Realizing that said hotel was probably so ritzy because it is attached to a casino
- Lounging in plushy white bathrobe after showering in fancy four-head shower and watching my precious children sleep in the bed next to mine while their daddy checks out the casino
- Having no urge to gamble because I suck at it. Example: I would have bet money that the Canadian sorority girl whining about needing to pee before our two-hour cave tour with no bathroom stops would have had an accident before anyone else. And I would have been wrong.
- And finally, an interesting moment that occurred while I was writing this post: watching my husband recount how he lost $200 at the craps table in his hour at the casino only to follow up by nailing quad deuces at video poker and cashing out a $2,000 jackpot. Woo-hoo! Free trip!
Even before that last point we were having an awesome trip. I’m looking forward to posting pictures once we get home.