Family vacations are supposed to promote togetherness. Ha! We took trips with our children until they were in college, and while we have some pleasant memories there are a lot more horror stories to tell. Before you take your next family vacation, consider these:
1. If you have teenagers, forget weight and size limits on luggage. You would think they were running away from home. And guess who is going to have to pack and unpack them from the car?
2. We once drove from Maryland to South Carolina in a Pontiac Grand Prix, fresh from the body shop after my son’s first accident. In a blinding thunderstorm on the way home we discovered the windshield wasn’t sealed properly, drenching everyone in the front seat.
3. We had to rent a turtle car-top carrier and strapped it to the hood of the car. About 50 miles out, we heard it sliding off the roof. We had to stop at a gas station and duct-tape the carrier to the top of the car. In the hot July sun, the tape melted, and we spent the next 10 hours with our arms out the windows, hanging on to the carrier.
4. Our two kids both brought a friend one year. The boys slept on the foldout couch in the living room, and for seven days, we had to leap over their clothes, shoes, and skateboards to get to the front door.
5. After a few days, the girls thought the guys were geeks and the guys thought the girls were stuck up little princesses. So much for harmony.
6. Even though there were two bathrooms, the girls laid claim to the one in the master bedroom. No chance for romance or privacy.
7. I wanted to play golf, tennis and gather shells. My husband planted himself in front of the TV to watch sports. Not everyone has the same idea of family vacation fun.
8. On a trip to visit relatives, I didn’t know that Uncle Al smoked three cigars a day and had his meals on a tight schedule. We were up with the chickens every day and had dinner at 4:30 pm sharp.
9. On a trip to visit other relatives, they proudly gave us their water bed. We sloshed and rode the waves for a week.
10. Their dog liked sleeping on the water bed, so despite all efforts, we were joined each night by a yappy dachshund with bad breath.