I think the term “restful vacation” should officially be removed from the dictionary. Or at least have some sort of asterisk next to in to indicate the fact that it is a mythical creature – especially if you are a wife or mother.
Not that I don’t love vacation – Hell, it hasn’t even started yet. And not that I don’t love my husband – I certainly do. But packing for vacation and trying to actually get on the road is a delicate 8-way negotiation, settled by a Treaty of Versailles and overseen by the Hague. [Hint to all the young folk out there – my favorite Social Studies teacher once told me that if asked about any war ending treaty, 9 times out of 10 it will be a Treaty of Versailles. It’s worked for me so far.]
I know that we are only going to Key West – in reality, a 4 hour drive from our house and not so different from going “downy ocean” from Baltimore as a kid. And we’re staying in a condo – not like we are camping in the deep Amazon. However, as a Mom there is always that overwhelming sense of urgency to be prepared for any emergency – like a scraped knee or a hurricane. I’ve come a long way in 3 years as a Mom, and I have come up with only 1 rule for family packing: pack twice as much as you think for the kids, and half as much for yourself. Now granted, as long as I packed a bathing suit and flip-flops I can enter establishment that I could care about in the Keys. If you’ve never been to SoFlo, generally speaking the term “Black Tie” means “wear both socks and underpants”.
This year will be interesting – I feel tragically unprepared. This year there is no travel crib, booster seat, formula, bottles or bottle brushes, baby carrier, 8-point harnessed pool float or EMT survival kit.
Well, we made it, and nobody got hurt on the drive down here. So far the only heavy negotiating has been when, exactly, is it 5 o’clock somewhere? And the answer is usually who cares.