I haven’t taken many vacations throughout my adult life. Little things would stand in my way, such as lack of money. I did manage to take one this year over my son’s spring break, but it was two days only and we barely did anything other than visit the Children’s Museum. (Which was great fun!)
The longest, probably most planned out trip I took in my “adult” life was one week after I graduated high school. My father packed myself, step sister, her son, my step mom, and himself into an RV to drive down to Texas. They had it planned out to the exact minute of every day. Which in my mind, didn’t sound to exciting because I thought schedules were for losers. I could appreciate things that needed to be scheduled, like tours they had planned, but to plan when to eat, when to leave each morning, when to go to bed, and when to pee seemed a bit extreme.
Of course, their carefully laid out schedule was shot directly in the heart the first day. Our RV broke down. Not only broke down, it started on fire. In some teeny tiny little no-man lands of a town. I think the population there were 50 people… and about 45 people showed up to put out the fire.
So we never made it to the first camping site. Instead, we were holed up in the town’s only hotel that probably never saw tourists before. I’m fairly certain it was the hotel men brought their mistresses too or kids came to drink and get high. I mean, the town wasn’t even on the map!
It took two days to fix the RV. Two days of my father’s schedule down the drain. Once we had the RV back and set out again, my stepmother poured over it, in hopes of recovering some of the things we were missing. In the end, she threw up her hands and said forget it and stuck to whatever was left on the schedule.
We managed to arrive in Texas without another hitch. However, the first day there, the schedule was again stomped on because both my father and his wife overslept. Right through breakfast hour and the first activity they had planned.
After that day, things went rather smoothly. They decided to use the schedule as a guideline, rather than something set in stone. We were finally able to relax and have some fun.
On the way back home, they had other things scheduled in other states. That schedule was burned too when the RV caught on fire for a second time, in the country area of Tennessee. No towns nearby. No cars passing by. Nada!
My stepsister and I were forced to walk miles down the road, hoping to find a town… a person… some form of life. We did manage to find one, and the town even had a towing company who we sent back down the road to rescue our family. We decided to take naps on the small town’s benches.
We didn’t get to do any of the planned activities for the ride back home. It took 2 days for them to fix the RV because, being a small town, they didn’t have the correct part for us and had to send someone 100 miles away to get it.
We never had a scheduled-filled vacation again after that. It was all about winging it. Which was a lot easier, in my mind!