July 23, 2012 by trixiec67
So the summer is half over. It’s already July 23rd. Personally, I can’t say I’ve done anything spectacular this summer. I never do. Last year, we took the kiddies to the most magical money drainer on earth: Disney World. And…we drove. My personal nightmare. However, I do have to say, at least my husband believes in stopping overnight in a hotel along the way.
Growing up, our family took two trips to Florida because my father bought property down there. Remember, I’m up in the mitten state. That would be Michigan. It’s a straight shot down I-75 from MI to FL. Including bathroom breaks and leg stretching and coffee refueling for my father, it was a twenty four hour journey in a 1972 Ford Club Wagon Van with five passengers and dad driving all the way. For anyone who’s never had the pleasure of owning or even being in a 1972 Club Wagon, it’s a tin can on wheels with a bench seat behind two front seats. Dad pulled out the second bench seat and it never made its way back in.
The engine basically was seated between the driver and the front seat passenger. There was a big black cover over it that made a convenient table. We skipped the table cloth. However, my dad did install little hookie things by all the side windows and asked his sister to sew curtains for “privacy”. We were stylin’.
This is a slightly older model but this is almost a dead ringer down to the paint color.
Back in the day when Ford converted these vans from completely commercial use to “family” vehicle, all they did was throw two benches in behind the driver and cut out holes in the sides and add windows. There was no “insulation” to reduce the noise factor from the road. There was no air conditioning. In the summer if you got stuck in the back, which was us kids, those little square windows opening liked the windows in your school classroom. You squeezed a hinge, lifted and pushed and the window barely opened two inches wide on the bottom. Wooo-hooo. In the winter you froze. Don’t forget the sleeping bag. This was not for sleeping purposes, just for warmth.
So when my husband told me we were driving to Florida for our wonderful adventure last year, I automatically went into a panic. Even though we took breaks and spent the night in a nice hotel on the way down, this old body of mine is NOT equipped to take long car rides any more. Forget it. I told him the next time he wants to do that, tell me the destination. I’ll meet him there. He can pick me up at the airport.
He still doesn’t get it. But then, he’s not the one who went through two spinal surgeries and is lugging around over ten pounds of titanium screwed into his skeletal system. Just call me Iron Mom.