So when my mother-in-law told me that they wanted to take my daughters on a Road Scholar Intergenerational guided tour of the Grand Canyon I thought it sounded like a great idea. And when I read the itinerary I became overcome with jealousy as my trip to the Grand Canyon at about the same age as Presley (I was 13, she is 11) was nothing like the extravaganza that is the Road Scholar Program. I spent three long weeks in a conversion van driving from Indiana to Arizona and back and camping along the way. Nevertheless I was anxious to share my travel journal that I had written during the trip, so my husband spent a miserable hour in our sauna of a shed searching for it. I was so excited when I opened it up to read to them all about my trip as a thirteen-year-old. I thought that I could pique their interest for the journey ahead. You can imagine my dismay when I found the entries and they consisted of about 6 pages of dates and names of campgrounds and lists of souvenirs purchased. There was hardly any description of the wonderful places I’d seen, just detailed descriptions of the lack of amenities at the camp sites. Apparently I wasn’t a very “happy camper”. My plan for my blog was to share the details of my trip and then the details of the girls days as a sort of side by side recounting of the same journey (though separated by decades). Having read my journal (in about 5 minutes) I’m not sure that plan is going to work, although you’d probably find my entries as hilarious as the rest of my family did (to my complete humiliation). My girls and I made journals so they can immortalize their trip in writing as well.
Day 1 (June 1, 1984): My diary entry: “Dear Diary, Today is June 1, 1984. We left home at 9:30 this morning. We are taking Grandma home (to Searcy, AR) then we are going out west for three weeks. We will be going through a lot of states and visiting a lot of interesting sites which I will name later (not so much).”
Day 1 (June 2, 2017): Presley, Peyton, and Nana depart Southside at 3pm (actually 3:15 after a frantic house-wide search for the lost keys to the rental car [they were behind a sofa cushion]) to drive to the Memphis airport to fly to Denver.
6:42pm, text from Nana: “Waiting to board, traffic and rain were awful, with bathroom potty stops at podunk gas stations. No food stop, so we got hot dogs to eat on the plane.”
10:41pm, text from Nana, “In the car headed home (Colorado Springs) with 2 sleepy girls. PJ had an upset stomach halfway here. Slept a little, vomited a bunch, then went back to (watching) Wreck it Ralph. Gave her a Pepcid and now she has Daddy Monkey and her Elvis blanket and is out (asleep). Presley was fine, she has her blanket and bear and looks to be asleep too.”
So far so good and not too much embarrassment (for me anyway). We’ll see what lies ahead.