The road holds a very near and dear place in my heart. I’ve heard so many horror stories involving road trips. So, while you may have some road trip horror stories I only have fond memories. Actually, I do have some horror stories but I still love those moments and wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world. I’ve read that the first memories are formed at age 3 but that at age 7 you experience childhood amnesia, which is when those early memories begin to fade. For the most part I think it’s definitely true that you forget a lot of your early memories and yet some of the earliest memories I can recall involve me being on the road with my family.
My first road trip was at the age of 3 when my family and some friends packed up a few cars and drove down to Guatemala. No you didn’t read that wrong my family DROVE to Guatemala. I don’t recall how long it took for us to get there but according to my family it took us 1-2 weeks to arrive at our destination. Guatemala is 65 hours away but with 3 kids under the age of 10 and lots of family to see along the way, we made a lot of stops. You would think that being stuck in a car with 3 kids for 1-2 weeks would scar you but nope! A few short years later my family decided to do it all over again. For the 2nd trip my oldest sister was 11, I was 6, and my youngest brother was 3. While I might not remember every single day on the road or of the trip, I do remember very random and specific things. I remember being in Arizona and pleading my father to buy me a heart-shaped necklace to which he said no but later surprised me with. I remember my mother sitting in the back of the van braiding my hair little by little until my entire head was completely covered. Or the time we stayed in a beach side hotel in Mexico and I found a lizard on the wall. Also being a very spoiled brat and getting jealous of all the gifts my parents got for all the kids in town. I even remember when we got pulled over in Mexico and the crooked cops tried to extort my father. Now, while I loved being on the road, I don’t think I could’ve spent that much time in a car on the way back. Instead, my family would sell our cars down there or gift them to family members and fly back. From that point on, my love for road tripping just grew. My family never road tripped back down to Guatemala but we often drove down to Los Angeles to visit family.
Being on the road planted the seed for my love of road travel as I got older. I always dreamed of throwing my belongings into the back of my car and driving for days, and that’s exactly what I did. When I turned 17 and got my license I would often pack my car and head out. Of course at that age the farthest I’d go with friends would be a weekend in Kelowna, Osoyoos, or just anywhere in the interior. Eventually this lead to my first solo girls road trip to California, what could possibly go wrong? It was smooth sailing for the most part on our way there. We got stuck in some traffic getting out of San Francisco which added another 4 hours to our trip but besides that, we made it to Los Angeles safely! The trip back on the other hand… Every stereotypical thing that could’ve gone wrong on a road trip did.
– A flat tire in the middle of nowhere late at night (bless the buddhist monk who pulled over to help us).
– The spare tire was also flat (bless BCAA who came to pump it up).
– No tire shops open for another 10 hours and having to sleep in the car parked in a sketchy lot.
– The tire shop not having the specific tire and having to drive somewhere else to order one.
– Waiting for 6 hours for the new tire to arrive from the warehouse.
So, it wasn’t a smooth trip back home but I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. Friendships were definitely tested but we all came out on top and look back and laugh about it. I mean if anything, it’s a great story to tell!