Family Vacation


Every summer our parents would take us on a family vacation. These were usually about a week in duration (it was the most my Dad would take off from work) but they seemed much longer, in the way that childhood has of stretching out time, especially during spells of grand adventure. We’d pack up the big station wagon, load a cooler with ice and sandwiches and soda (a treat, as we never got to drink much soda as kids) and head out on a carefully-plotted excursion. Sometimes we went South – to Florida or South Carolina – and sometimes we’d head North – to Montreal or Toronto. It didn’t really matter to us – we just loved the thrill of getting out of town for a while, and the excitement of hotel stays and new places to see.

For one of these vacations, a friend of my Mom gave her a journal to keep track of everything we did. She made a few entries before this final one:

The kids are miserable.

Emil – generally miserable.

Me – wondering why the hell I plan these vacations…

Looking back, we laugh at it. At the time, I’m sure there was hell to pay. Now, as we are about to embark on our first family vacation in over two decades, I hope the twins don’t volley my karma back at me. We’ll be on the Cape, where a couple of four-year-olds can get very tiresome if there’s not fun and sun and a lot to do. Wish me luck.

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