What I Did On My Summer Vacation. Remember writing those back-to -school papers? I do!

When I was growing up, my family loaded up the station wagon and hit the road the day after school was out for three weeks. The back of the car was the coveted spot; you could take a nap with pillows and a blanket. Plus you didn’t have to share a seat with your siblings.

We always missed the beginning of summer parties. My sister always celebrated her birthday on the road. She turned sixteen in the Kicking Horse Campground in Canada. It was raining. She was covered in mosquito bites. Happy birthday!

Our trips involved lots of driving and, often, lots of camping. We drove north from Oakland, California to Oregon, Washington and Canada. We drove east to South Dakota (to visit the family farm), Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, Arizona and Idaho.

Twice, we flew east, picked up new cars and drove back to California via Canada, first visiting many states along the way like New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Maine, Missouri, Iowa, etc.

I did a lot of reading and napping on those trips. I remember viewing the vacation slide show once, when a picture popped up of a sight I didn’t recognize.

“When did we go there?” I asked my dad.

“You and your sister were napping,” he said. “So we left you in the car.” Huh?

Often, Salt Lake City was the final night of our vacation. We would arise before dawn and be on our way home, a mere 730 mile drive.

I’m grateful for all the travel, for the opportunity our parents gave us to experience most of the United States. This was how I thought everyone did vacation.

Until I met my husband.

His family returned year after year to the same beloved spot: Big Sur. Big Sur was about a two-hour drive from their home. His family would spend their entire vacation at Big Sur, camping, fishing and backpacking. Mind-boggling!

Once we became a couple, we melded past family vacation styles. We visit different locales, but we usually stay at that location for multiple nights and we don’t drive more than 250 miles in a day.

So..what did you do on your summer vacation?