We have returned, mostly unscathed, from a trip to the Chikking Wranch to visit the recently unappendicized Grandma Sarah and the Happy Chikking Wrancher himself, Grandpa Laryy. A certain boy had a wonderful time exploring new toys that Grandpa Laryy finds on his garage sale safaris, and he got a big kick out of doing things that made Grandma sigh over his cuteness and having Grandpa roll around on the floor with him.
Travel, we have learned, is not what it used to be. Gone, I presume, are the days when our biggest worry on a trip to visit one set of parents or the other was the fact that the stupid Burger King didn't give me my fries and we're already back on the interstate and I was hungry and really looking forward to them or the fear that Iowa -- or southern Indiana -- would stretch on F-O-R-E-V-E-R. Now, it's going to be making it there and back with our sanity intact... and a boy who's not traumatized.
This afternoon, after lunch and some extra play time for the boy with grandma while the parents packed, we set off for home. There were no open eyes in the backseat by the time we passed through the "congested area" of 416 and got onto the Pennyrile, heading north. He slept for a good hour and woke hungry during our stop in Washington for ice cream and bathrooms. So Dad got ice cream while Mom fed the kid. We had a good diaper change and a walk around the car, and we were off again, but he was finished sleeping, and we had miles to go before any of us would sleep again.
After another half an hour or so, the poor bored child got his friend, the pacifier, which he sucked on and played with and talked to on and off for the rest of the trip. This wasn't always enough, though. We stopped in Martinsville to give him dinner, but by the north side of Indy, he was cranky again. Holding hands with Mommy was just the answer, but the elbow does NOT comfortably bend in that direction for some 20 miles. It just doesn't.
Finally home, we rethink our strategy in consideration of a forthcoming (and yet to be scheduled) trip to visit the grandparents who reside a bit further than 5 hours away. More stops. Some new toys to introduce throughout the trip -- and ones that aren't easily dropped down on either side of the seat. Companionship in the seat beside him on occasion. More stops.
But this isn't as bad as I am sure it will get. I can remember a few choice incidents from my own past that will most likely return to haunt me...
Add your travel nightmares/warnings here.
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