No sunny destination for us. Michigan, the “Great Lakes State” and home of my youth will be our spring break playground. No sun or sand for us. It actually snowed there two days ago—snow in April! Can you say global warming? The Michigan of my youth was rarely warm. Humid, yes, and always overcast and flat as a pancake. I grew up in the downriver area, a suburb of Detroit. Not much has changed since I’ve become an adult. We’re headed towards grey skies, flat land, and potholes large enough to swallow a mid-sized car. Did I mention all the strip malls and the seriously depressed economy? We have a joke in my family that everything in Michigan is on sale. When you live on either coast and then visit Michigan everything from food to clothing feels like it’s on sale. The other joke we have is that when you cross the border into Michigan you are greeted with a sign that says: “under construction”. No joking. They have been working on every major interstate and highway road since I was a baby.
Yesterday we made it through the first 5 hours of road time and stopped in Clearfield, PA. We spent the night at a Holiday Inn Express and Suites. I swear it took us twenty minutes to get inside because my 17-month-old-son picked up every rock and examined it on the way into the hotel. We were fortunate that this hotel had a pool so my daughter could burn off some pent-up energy. She had spent the last 5 hours sitting slack-jawed in front of the portable DVD player with her wireless headphones (for our benefit) watching what seemed to be an orphan themed marathon of shows that included Annie and The Rescuers. Lots of orphan questions ensued.
We all slept restlessly with multiple interruptions. My daughter had one of her all night teeth grinding sessions (without mouth guards) while my enormous son tried to sleep in a portable crib that barely held him. Every time he rolled over he cried out in his sleep. It was far too small for him and made him look and behave like a caged animal.
This morning we hit the open highway and I’m actually excited to see the signs for I-80 west—Cleveland. Who gets excited over Ohio? I’ll tell you who, someone who’s been couped-up in a car with 2 young kids.