I love a road trip. Almost as much as I love a road trip, I love to plan a road trip. And as soon as I get home from a road trip, I start planning the next one. I surf the net, I order the free travel brochures, I pour over them and dream.
The next road trip for me has been in the works for about a year and a half. It all started when the kids and I returned from a camping trip to Arkansas from my parents. It was their first camping trip, and they still talk about it. I sat down the next day to plan the next road trip, like I love to do, and happened to look up National Parks for Texas. That's when my obsession with Big Bend National Park began.
I decided this one might not be too good for the kids, what with them being low on food chain out there and all, and the husband volunteered to stay home with them if I could find someone to go with me. I then began systematically pestering everyone I knew who might want to run away for a few days with me. Six months later, after a well-timed hiking guidebook arrived in the mail to her snow-laden abode, my sister Wendy, the Queen of all Road Warriors, declared her allegiance to Big Bend as well.
After all those months of planning, I am proud to say my sister and I are getting ready to ditch our kids, I mean, let them have quality time with other loved ones, pack up the camping and hiking gear, and head south to Big Bend at an indeterminate date for an unknown length of time. (Of course, we know the dates, but this is the internet after all!)
People do think it's strange that I talk about and love Big Bend so much. I talk about it all the time. It's such a beautiful place. It's wild and uninhabited, and from what I have read, you can hike all day and not run into another person in some spots. The pictures that I have seen are breathtaking.
To be honest, however, this obsession doesn't have all that much to do with the park itself. It's more about the escape. The real truth is, there are a lot of days that I don't feel like being Mommy. I feel like getting in my car and heading south to Mexico and not looking back. But I don't. I stay here. And whenever one of those Calgon moments happens in my house, I take a deep breath and picture myself standing atop a mountain peak overlooking the Rio Grande River, sounding my barbaric YAWP over into Mexico.
Yes, I do plan to do a lot of Yawping. And a lot of hiking. I want to watch a sunrise and just praise God with whatever comes from my heart. I want to be away from civilization for a bit, just to slow down and think clearly. I need to see beauty, to stand atop an overlook and see God's creation; no cars, no concrete, no city.
Then I will come back, I promise. I will once again tackle my daily life in the suburbs, fighting traffic, shuttling kids around, doing laundry, doing life with my family again. I will be happy to be home because I will have missed them terribly.
Probably within a few days of my return, I will start planning the next road trip. I think the next one will be Colorado. Want to come? Let's order the brochures now so I can start planning.
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