Monday, April 18, 2011

Road Trip

This is Merrillee ready to tell you about a road trip I took before cell phones were in wide use. What does a road trip have to do with heroes? Here is my story. Back in the early 90's (that's 1990's) when we lived near Boston, I took a cross-country road trip with my two teenage daughters. Here's a photo of a vehicle very similar to the one I drove.

My husband would fly to join us when we reached Spokane, Washington, where one of my brothers lives. (What was I thinking?) I wanted to show my girls some of the sights in our wonderful country and parts of Canada. During our month-long trip, we visited four national parks and saw several national monuments besides a myriad of other sights that are too numerous to mention. Here are some of these places.

The Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota

The Badlands National Park in the western part of South Dakota

Mt. Rushmore in the Black Hills of South Dakota

Little Big Horn Battlefield National Monument

As we drove along route 212 in Montana toward the Little Big Horn Battlefield the minivan started to shimmy, and then one of the back tires blew. I had a flat tire in the middle of nowhere, Montana. You can see from the photo above that there isn't much out there except grass and a few trees. I could change a tire, couldn't I? After all, I was a modern woman. So I got out the jack and started the process while cars I had passed earlier went whizzing by. When I was finding it difficult to lower the spare tire from its perch beneath the minivan, two families of migrant farm workers stopped. The two gentlemen pulled out their heavy duty jack and had my tire changed in five minutes. My heroes! That trip took place nearly twenty years ago, but I still remember how thankful I was for those two men who changed my tire.

Part of the rain forest in Olympic National Park

Butchart Gardens in Victoria, BC, Canada

Mount Rainier National Park

Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park

Here is Mount Spokane. The day we arrived in Spokane the temperature was 106 degrees F. When we returned a week later after a whirlwind tour of the western part of Washington State and parts of British Columbia, Canada, it snowed on Mount Spokane.

We saw a lot a fabulous sights on this trip, and besides the heroes that changed my tire, this trip reminds me of all the men and women who heroically crossed this nation in covered wagons and faced dangers of all sorts to settle our country from coast to coast.

Please share with us the story of a road trip you have taken.


  1. Wow how cool what an exciting trip (for me it would have been interesting as I get car sick and would get carsick looking at a car!)
    We use to just go from here to about 2 hours interstate to where mum use to live, its quite near the Grampian mountain range and we would go there for a one day trip. this was up to the age of 8 after that dad had a stroke and trips stopped. But one day we were going to a certain place where Mum and Dad use to camp and go when they were younger. Well we ended up going the wrong way and took qhite a long time to find where we should be going but it was a fun trip.

  2. I've never heard of the Corn Palace. Now I'm all curious. And the foresty one with the greenery. I want to go there!

  3. Merrillee, that sounds like so much fun!! And like something I might do. :)

    I've never travelled across the country except for flights to conferences and one drive to Colorado with a youth group to go skiing. I think I need to remedy that!

  4. Ausjenny,
    I also used to get carsick when I was a kid, but I mostly outgrew it. I have to be on a very curvy, windy road for car travel to affect me now. I think driving also helps. I would love to come and travel in Australia sometime. The long airplane ride and its cost are standing in my way.

    Thanks for sharing your trip with us.

  5. Pamela,
    My kids and my husband make fun of the Corn Palace, but I always thought it was a fascinating place, at least on the outside. Inside is nothing to brag about, but the outside is spectacular. The Native Americans come in every year and use corn to make all the murals.

  6. Missy,
    That's why I wanted to make the road trip. You miss so much when you fly. Even though my kids complained about being away from their friends for a month, it is a trip we still talk about.

  7. I wish I could say I out grew it! I do much better in a bus but windy roads will affect me at times and sometimes its more the way the roads are but other times I can feel sick going from here to the street 5 mins! if I have a headache Im in trouble. I now wear a rubber band around my wrists and it works.
    I have been on quite a few bus trip and gotten to know some interesting people and some real pains but its fun to get to see parts of the country.

  8. Ausjenny,
    I've heard that thing about the rubber band, but I've never tried it. I still get seasick, so I wear one of those transderm patches that dispenses some kind of medicine to help with seasickness. It works, but it gives me dry mouth. I can live with that if it means not being seasick.

  9. It seems strange that a rubber band on the wrist does anything but I know it helps. I was in Tasmania taking stuff to stop car sickness (now tassie is windy) and nothing worked. Oh they worked for the other lady who was really suffering so I put on the rubber bands figuring it wouldn't help much but it did a little. I still feel of on some area but not as bad wish I had known when I went in the little plane over ayers rock cos that flight everyone but the pilot was feeling really sick with me the worst only I rarely am physically sick I just feel bad for ages after. Had not problem in the small planes in Hawaii.


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