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So. It appears we will be driving to California this summer.

That’s right. Two adults. Three children. One mini-van. Three days. And somewhere in the neighborhood of 1500 miles.


Gonna be seein’ a whoooole lotta this pretty soon…..

This all came about rather suddenly. For one reason or another we did not seriously begin trying to find plane tickets to book until this weekend. And, as usually happens for these summer trips, prices had started to climb while availability plummeted. That’s when Robert came up with this idea. He always drives to California for his part of the trip. The kids and I leave first and he motors out to join us around halfway through.

This time, though, we will all leave together and make the drive. Home to Albuquerque, Albuquerque to Flagstaff (with a side trip to the Grand Canyon) and Flagstaff to Atascadero. Then the kids and I will fly home on one-way tickets. Easy peasy, right?

Somehow, I doubt it. You know, considering it’s us.

I’m also, for the record, unconvinced that this will end up being any cheaper than just buying the slightly-more-expensive-than-last-week plane tickets. I plan to keep a record of our expenses. I’d like to say it will be strictly for my own personal edification and that I won’t gloat if I end up being correct, but I’m not making any promises.

On that pesky other hand, there are also some perks to doing it this way. Instead of leaving around the 23rd, we won’t leave until the 30th, a.k.a. payday. Very helpful. We also won’t need a rental car for the first two weeks we are there.

Since we will be leaving later that also pushes our return further into August. I was originally looking at something like the 3rd to come home. Now it’ll be more like the 8th…..which, serendipitously enough, happens to be the day after The Sun Kings have a run of three shows in a row. My early plan is for us to fly out of San Jose or San Francisco on the 8th, but to go up a couple days prior and go to a couple of (or maybe all three!) shows before flying home. This also gives me a little more wiggle room with their July shows rather than my feeling I “have to” go to one show or another because it’s one of only a few chances I have.

And with that the preparations begin. I need to take my van to a Honda dealership for some minor repairs, and it absolutely must be detailed and have the carpets shampooed before I’ll consider spending three days in it. We have our route basically mapped out and even our dining selections made (thank you, Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives). I’ll even start collecting our clothing and other items to take and putting them in a central location as I find them. Oh, and somewhere in there I have to work VBS at church for a week and also make a nice birthday for my sometimes-overlooked middle child.

Yes, June will be an interesting month, not the least of reasons being that I will be trapped in a motor vehicle with my entire family for a minimum total of 24 hours. I plan to blog about my captivity via iPhone. Will we make it out alive? It’s anyone’s guess. Tune in later this month to find out.

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