I talked about a road trip to Southern California I took 35 years ago with my husband in a previous blog: Roadtrip. In May, my husband and I hit the road again, this time pulling the long, long trailer behind us.
We went south and settled in Anaheim after a long nine-hour drive on Highway 5. After relaxing to an already cooked dinner (thanks to a day of cooking before we left) we headed outside to watch the Disneyland fireworks from our RV park. We got six days of it! There is something magical standing in the darkness and watching the sky light up in beautiful colors.
The next two days were given to exploring Disneyland. As always, we headed first to our favorite ride, The Pirates of the Caribbean. Unfortunately, it was closed for refurbishing for several more weeks. So, we proceeded next to the Haunted House or another favorite as a first ride for us. It was closed—it had broken-down. Not to be discouraged, we got in line for Thunder Mountain ready for the thrill of a roller coaster. Right when we got up ready to board…it also broke.
At this point I was beginning to wonder what was going on. After they cleared us out of the line at this ride we headed over to Peter Pan– another one of our favorites. Twenty-five minutes, we were in the shade. We thought we’d made it. Guess what? It broke down, too. By now I was laughing and wondering what the message was. I didn’t ponder on that thought too long, as I was determined to get onto a ride.
We waited as others left for them to fix the ride. Finally, we saw the first boat come into port. It was going again. We got seated and were whisked off into Neverland. We weren’t disappointed, and things went smoothly from there. Then our fun continued as we flew through outerspace on Space Mountain and raced in Radiator Springs (I admit to giggling a bit on this ride). My inner child got quite the work out.
After our amusement park fix we got a nice visit in with some relatives and then headed for the beach. Exploring on the sandy landscape always brings me to a peaceful state of being.
Then, on our final day we headed to the San Diego Zoo. It had been 35 years since we’d been there. It had changed a lot in many good ways. We started with the bus tour and then when it was done we worked our way downhill through the many different areas with the map in hand.
We had lunch with the elephants and I spent some time watching a tiger (I was born in the year of the tiger and have a connection to all cats big or small…).
The grounds were beautiful with lots of greenery and waterfalls, and it brought back a lot of memories of a younger version of us walking the same path.
Then, we headed back home knowing we had two more road trips to come…
Thirty-five years might have separated these trips, but they were both amazing. Our younger versions had more energy and we explored further. This older version paced ourselves, stopped more and observed. Either version of us, though, our hearts were still the same along with our wonder. We laughed like children on the rides, were amazed at nature’s beauty and at peace around the animals. This time we slept in comfort and had a kitchen to use, over an ice chest and a bed in the back of a van 35 years ago, but it was still us–together. And the message was when the rides kept breaking, that it didn’t matter what we did as long as we did it together.
Embrace your inner child! D.L. Finn