A Western Wonder
When I settled down in Southern California some few years ago, with my sister and her family a mere 397 miles away in Scottsdale AZ, I thought we'd be seeing lots of each other! Turns out, we only managed to get together a few times a year - her family managed to load up the minivan when the kids were off school for an extended weekend once a year, my husband and I made it an annual tradition to drive out and be with them for Rosh Hashanah, and she and I met up at my mom's in Skokie with the kids every summer (bonus points were when my parents flew out west on a holiday and we all got together in one place or another).
We chat non-stop each day, and talk about how lovely it would be if we actually lived near each other; able to spend the days together (Freida and her son, Yudi, were born 7 days apart 2 years ago). I never thought of making the trek out there alone... the whole thing just seemed so daunting! (Isn't the gas the same price as an airline ticket? Don't they say that desert-stretch is much too long to attempt alone? Is there even highway patrol in Yuma? Other cars on the road? Isn't driving such a waste of a vacation day? etc.) You see, when we do the drive in September we rise at about 4am and hit the road in an attempt to keep Freida asleep for most of the drive, and to make sure we get there long before sundown on the eve of the Jewish New Year. I never thought to try the drive myself - in daylight - until the opportunity presented itself.
After breakfast on Sunday morning I threw some heels and an outfit + a PJ tee, and toothbrush in a gym bag, filled the tank with gas, kissed Freida and the Mr. goodbye and headed out for my wild west road-trip - solo. Turns out, cruise control and the Republic Tigers make for fantastic travel-mates! 5 hours flat from my door to hers - it was a breeze! I made it there early enough to help with setting up for the event she was hosting (the reason for my random rendezvous) within minutes I was piping some cupcakes and bubble-bathing my delicious niece and nephews - some of my all-time favorite pre-marital activities! There was something so magical about being at home sharing breakfast with Freida while talking to Shterni on the phone, and then ringing her doorbell, in Scottsdale, well before the dinner hour...! It was a trip that needed to be done if only for the purpose of experiment.
I woke up at 7am this morning in Arizona, brewed some coffee to-go, pit-stopped for petrol, and was home just in time to reap the advantages of a toddler's two-hour nap (my (very generous) Mother-in-Law agreed to be with Freida today and had just put her down as I walked through the door!). A little tidying-up, a hot shower, some lunch and it was as if I never left. Plus, hearing Freida cry "Mommy! Oh my goodness!" upon seeing me come to get her when she woke was well worth the trip alone! ...Even though I won't deny freaking out just a wee little bit when I cruised past this sign:
Anyways, I'm so super excited with my new discovery! I hope to pack up a few days-worth of clothes every once in a while and travel the west with Freida much more often than we're used to. It's quite literally not much more than a skip, hop, and jump...!!
For now though, I will be getting to bed and catching up on lots of lost shut-eye... I'll be back to proper blogging tomorrow (got some great things to share!!).