I have been spending my "summer hall pass" time doing the exact thing I neglected to spend time doing last summer—connecting with my girl friends that get neglected during the school year. I have had long lunch dates and longer morning coffee dates. I have had long, long distance phone calls with some of my best girl friends who live far away. I still have my usual super long breakfast date on the calendar…the kind of breakfast where you sometimes tip more than the bill as an apology for taking the table for endless hours because you fear the dinner crowd is starting to roll in. I have babysat my co-workers babies (because when you don’t have babies other’s babies are a joyful novelty). I've taken the time to lie in the sun bronzing my skin. I've read lots of books. I've had the traditional family night of dinner and a movie at the drive-in. I have just about solely supported the existence of the Redbox at the gas station at the top of the street. But summer is just about to get a whole lot better!
King Ralph and I are soon setting out to explore this great country of ours in the camper—minus the offspring. (It’s all part of the leaf turning over that we both have to learn to accept.) We are going to cross a few things off our bucket list. We are getting packed…maps and books on tapes (to which the girls have proclaimed seems a little geriatric, but I think seems like a great idea that won’t cause me car sickness and keep my summer reading list in check), hiking shoes and camelbaks. We are going to sit by campfires in the mountains and sip blueberry and raspberry beers, or few glasses of pinot noir and grill yummy foods while talking about the girls we miss that soon will all be gone from the house. We are going to eat Maine lobster, in Maine and cups of New England chowder. We will walk the footsteps of our fore fathers and eat great Italian food. I will sing solo to King Ralph as we fly down the highways and he will play the air guitar on his leg, while steadying the steering wheel with his other hand. We will
worry about if the trash gets to the curb or if the dog is being fed. We will be a carefree couple.
It’s still going to be our usual Griswold style vacation, except this time it’s just Clark and Ellen on the open road.