- 1,000 kilometers
- 13 hours
- 2 children in the back
- Roof rack – full
- 500 pounds of gear
We have traveled these highways many, many times over the past 20 years. As a child I made this voyage among others in my parents car at least once per summer. So when there are upgrades to this route that generally improve the road or make the trip shorter, it is a major event for me.
There are a few rules and strategies that are commonly used to make it through. Modern technology has made it quite a bit easier on the parents and the children both. Gameboys where just becoming available when I was a teenager. My children take the uninterrupted hour upon hour as a gift to advance levels and beat personal records.
Music choice was always a big one when I was a kid. The local radio station had to be kept on until my Dad’s favourite songs were only a faint whisper through the static. Then, and only then would he concede that it was officially time for a cassette tape. Usually the first pick went to my Mom, but she may not even be in the mood to listen to her one lone cassette thrown into the box. Then we would rotate in turn through all 3 girls. We were very much interested in music. The whole car would be subject to whatever badly recorded pop we had managed to assemble.
Nowadays, while music is very important to my kids, the whole vehicle doesn’t need to enjoy it. They simply plug-in the iPod and turn it up. Meanwhile in the rush to pack up, I didn’t check with my husband regarding our music selections. And given that we both have iPhones, I wasn’t too worried about it. I had even loaded a 30 hour novel read by the author, which I was quite excited to listen to when it was my turn to drive. The disappointment to discover that this Honda Pilot music system only accepted CD’s! So we are back to the old days…radio that we can pick up, who knows what we get or just endless fuzzy, fuzzy, fuzzy.
All that technology and diversion aside, it is a privilege to be able to make the crossing. Most people in the world will not get to experience the sights and sounds that have become a little bit routine for my family.