are-we-there-yetIn the summer of 1975 my family –  myself, my Mom, Dad, Sister Katy and Brother Mike – piled into our Ford LTD and embarked on a  cross country trip from St. Louis Park, MN to Carmel, CA.

Along the way we stayed at such illustrious destinations as  Des Moines, IA, Lincoln, NE, Grand Junction, CO, Denver, CO, and Salt Lake City, UT. We stayed over night at the Grand Canyon, spent two nights in Vegas Baby, three days at Disney Land and finally reached our destination of Carmel, CA where we stayed for a few days with our Aunt Flo. On our way back we visited the Grand Tetons, stayed two nights at Yellowstone, stopped at Mt. Rushmore, and then after an all night drive of about 1000 miles arrived back home.

Quite a trip

As my brother and sister will tell you it was a great trip…except for the trip part.

Three kids aged 14, 12, and 9 stuck together on a 4000 mile trip in the back seat of a Ford LTD makes for a very toxic combination.

We didn’t always smell the best, running along trails, hiking mountains, and sitting under the hot sun in a car with a somewhat iffy air conditioning unit made for some pretty odoriferous days.

Each of us was constantly trying  get as comfortable as possible in that cramped space, so would take any advantage we could to stretch out. This often resulted in waking up from a brief snooze with someone’s dirty, stinky feet in your face. More importantly however, it resulted in some epic backseat fights, complete with screaming, punching, pinching, biting, hair pulling….and some excellent sarcasm!

We actually reduced our mother to tears, which was quite a feat as anyone who knew our mother can tell you. We felt bad at the time, but now kind of look on it as an accomplishment in a weird sort of way!

My brother and I tried paying our sister to lay on the floor of the car so we could stretch out more easily. She thought this was a good deal at first. But as anyone who rode in those old cars will remember, there was a  hump on the floor that covered the drive shaft. So, after about 10 minutes of trying to curl up on one side of the hump, or trying to stretch out over it,  she reneged on the deal and the fighting started all over again!!!

And finally, there is one word that can described an additional unpleasant experience related to that trip. And that word is…Dashiki!

I still can’t talk about it…

Anyway, I have described this in such detail to illustrate how starting a diet can feel. As you can imagine, the major refrain from the back seat of that blue Ford LTD, one that repeated itself over and over again was – ARE WE THERE YET!

No matter how long we had been driving we never seemed to get closer…until we were there. That is what dieting feels like at first…and that is what I feel like right now! It seems impossible that I will ever get to my final destination.

Luckily, I have memories of that trip to California, because no matter how much screaming, fighting, and stinkiness there was, and no matter how many times we wailed ARE WE THERE yet because it seemed like we never would get there….we ultimately did!

All for now!



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