Over the years, oceans, and countries, I’ve had quite a few travel companions. I’ve traveled with groups, significant others, and friends. Most of my travels, however, have been with family members. I suppose in a way it makes sense. When you’re young you don’t have much choice in the matter, and then when you get older and move apart it just becomes necessary.
Growing up we would always stick to the surrounding areas within easy driving distance for our family vacations. My mom didn’t step foot on a plane until she was almost 40 and even then she only did so out of absolute necessity (of course after the first trip she was totally hooked – smile). I boarded a plane at 16 and I don’t think there’s been a year since that I haven’t been on one going somewhere. (What can I say? I don’t like to sit still! (smile)) But I digress. Suffice it to say our family vacations were pretty typical I think – long drives, roadside motels, and sandwiches made in the backseat of the car (okay, maybe not so typical). I never minded very much, so long as we got to go somewhere!
When my mom passed away, my dad suddenly decided that we (he, my brother, and I) should go see all the places we’d always talked about going as a family but never did. So I spent my spring breaks and summer vacations seeing Niagara Falls, Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, a great portion of southern California, and entirely too much of the Ohio countryside (sorry guys). I eventually got “my boys” to branch out and meet me in England for a grand European road trip, which was incredible fun!!
Since my dad remarried there’s been a lot more traveling with just my brother, which is easier in some ways (my dad can be a pretty high maintenance traveler), but I always feel guilty for going without my dad. So this Yellowstone trip is something special to all of us – it’ll be the first time the three of us have taken a vacation together in many years, and I can’t wait! Yes, my dad will complain most of the time we’re inside of a car, but I’m guessing I can forgive him that and just focus on the beautiful scenery (smile).
I’ve never been embarrassed about traveling with my family – not when I was a teenager and not even now at the ripe old age of 30. Maybe I’m not building memories with my significant other or creating travel anecdotes with friends, but I am bonding with the two most important guys in my life. With the three of us living so far apart now and spending so little time together, there’s no time to do anything but cherish the moments (and take tons of photos – smile).
What do you think about family travel??