Thursday, August 06, 2009

Traveling in Circles (Sort of Mishapen Circles)

N and I went on vacation last week.

It was not a long vacation, nor did we go very far. It was a vacation I could barely afford, but it was tons of fun. I think the good memories are worth the cost. We didn’t just go somewhere and then come back though. We kind of made a sort of an angularish (I don’t care if Spell-check says it isn’t a word. I like it, and I’m using it. So there.) circle through the lower half of Indiana.

If you look on the map up top both Star A and Star E are located in the same place, which is why you can’t see the A but only the E. This was the start and end of our loop. Yes, we may have come from somewhere else to start here but this was the start of our Indiana angularish circling loop. Day 1 saw us traveling from Star A to Star B, which is Holiday World in Santa Claus, IN. Days 2 & 3 were spent enjoying the attractions there with the evening of Day 3 ending with us driving to Star C where we spent the night on our way to Star D, the Indianapolis Zoo, where we spent a few hours on Day 4 before returning to Star E/A.

Well, there you have it. Our vacation in a nutshell, and that should about do it. Well, that would about do it if someone less wordy than I were writing this. Unfortunately for you this is but the beginning, the part where I have told you briefly what I’ll be telling you, to be followed next by the details to flesh out the story, and finally summarized at the end by telling you what I’ve just told you. (Oh, and you didn’t think I was listening during Public Speaking 101, did you? Ha! Fooled you.)

Day One
We were supposed to do the loop in the opposite direction, starting with the Indianapolis Zoo on the first day. However, work being a priority so I can continue to feed and clothe and house myself and N, I ended up with only a half day off instead of a full day off. Also, W was going to take N to the county fair so I thought we wouldn’t leave until early evening and would drive down south and find a motel near Holiday World so we could get an early start there the next morning. It turned out N decided he didn’t want to go to the county fair so we ended up leaving mid-afternoon. The weather was beautiful as we made our way down through Terre Haute and was just clouding up a bit by the time we reached Vincennes. Our plan was to stop for dinner somewhere near Evansville and then to start looking for a place to stay that night between Evansville and Holiday World. All was well until we realized that our route didn’t exactly take us all the way to Evansville and that we had seemingly left the civilized world behind upon our entrance to I-64. Then the rains came, not drizzle, not showers, not a light rain, but a downpour the likes of which cause many to pull to the side of the road and wait. We waited. We started again as the rain slacked off from buckets to cats and dogs. We, along with many others, made our way eastward at something around 40 MPH. This, my friends, was the most desolate stretch of interstate I’d seen since driving across Arizona and New Mexico. Oh sure, it was anything but desert with its trees and greenery and driving rain, but motels? Not a one! Restaurants? Ha! Apparently no one eats or sleeps between Evansville and Louisville. We finally made it to an exit where we found a small oasis of motel, restaurant and gas station. Hallelujah. Thanks to the raging storm we had dinner delivered, ate in our room, watched a little TV and then slept like babies.

Day Two
When I awoke I saw that the storm had passed and blue skies awaited us. N slept late, and I didn’t have the heart to wake him while on vacation. Once he was awake we headed off to our first day at Holiday World. Since I am the palest woman on earth I wore pants instead of shorts and slathered on the sunscreen on my face, neck and arms determined not to end up sunburned at the beginning of vacation. We hiked all over that theme park from Christmas to Halloween to Thanksgiving to Fourth of July repeatedly. N rode lots of rides. I rode a few. Mostly, he’d just go get in line, make a few new friends and ride with them while I was more the store-all for various things like his sunglasses, his drink, whatever assorted stuff he had with him. While he waited in line and rode rides I saw shows and looked in gift shops and sat on benches people watching. At the end of the day, N proclaimed it to be the best day of vacation ever.

Day Three
Again N slept late, but this time so did I. We barely made it down in time for free breakfast in the motel lobby, and when we did we had just thrown on some comfy clothes and hadn’t bothered with any of the niceties like hair combing or teeth brushing. We did all that after breakfast and before we headed out to the water park portion of the park, Splashin’ Safari. I believe it was on this day (though it might have been the day before) that I saw a man wearing a t-shirt that said:
Jesus loves you
(but I’m his favorite)

That made me smile.

What I saw much too much of on this day, however, were inappropriately dressed people. I have no idea what possesses women with large rolls of fat to wear bikinis. I am fat. I wear one-piece swimsuits. I do not wear bikinis. If you have multiple rolls of fat on your body you should not wear bikinis either. Get a one-piece or lose weight. Those are your choices. I also have no idea what possesses parents to dress their little girls in bikinis. They have nothing to keep the top in the right place thereby more often than not exposing the very parts those little flat triangles were meant to cover. Mostly it was the female gender with the fashion faux pas that day. However, there had to be a few guys, mostly of the teen to twenties set, wearing their shorts so low that had they not had on boxers underneath their entire butt would have been exposed. I told N that I’ll string him up if he ever dresses that way. He replied that only gangsters and gangster wannabe’s dress that way so I wouldn’t have to worry about him ever dressing that way. Thank you son.

We didn’t leave the park until it was almost closing time, just in time for the lightning and thunder and rain to start. Again it rained hard on us, not as hard as the first night but hard enough that traffic was slow. With it getting late and us not having had dinner yet, N slept fitfully as I looked for a place to stay. That place was Corydon, not too much before getting to Louisville. I was never so happy to see an exit with so many choices of chain motels and chain restaurants. We ate our only fast food meal of the trip that night, going through the drive-thru at McDonald’s before settling into our motel room. We slept really, really well that night.

Day Four
I knew it would be hard to get up that morning so I set the alarm for 9:00 which would give us time to get downstairs for free breakfast before 10:00 and checkout at 11:00. When the alarm went off I got up, showered, and dressed. N was sound asleep. I hated to wake him, but he’d been so upset at having to rush to get to breakfast the day before that I tried. I gently shook him and called his name. He grunted at me. I asked if he wanted to get up for breakfast, and he again grunted at me. I said that he could choose to get up, or we could have breakfast somewhere else later. He rolled over and pulled the covers up tight around him. I took that as choosing the latter option. By the time he finally woke up I had to call down to the desk to ask for late check out as it was clear that 11:00 was not going to be possible. They gave us until 12:00, and we were out by 11:45. We had brunch at Ryan’s Buffet before getting back on the road. We still had one more stop to make at the Indianapolis Zoo. We arrived there around 3:00 and stayed until they closed at 6:00. Then we headed on home, stopping for dinner on the way.

We got back four days ago, and I’m still tired. It was a good trip though. N loved the coasters at Holiday World, he loved Splashin’ Safari, he loved the zoo. I loved that he had such a great time. Neither of us loved traveling in rainstorms. Also, just in case you’re thinking of following our trail, be aware that there doesn’t seem to be any highway in Indiana without major road construction happening right now. They would probably be better off if they had just closed the whole state for the summer and fixed all the flipping roads and then reopened. Sorry to those I know in Indiana that I didn’t attempt to see you while I was there. It was a whirlwind trip, and focused on N, so I just didn’t have the time or energy for it.


Fusion said...

Reminds me of the old joke about the two Idaho and Montana "seasons": Winter and Road Construction...

Glad you both had a great time!

Cocotte said...

That sounds like a really fun trip to me! I love zoos and amusement parks. And yes, I can't believe what people wear to water parks or hotel pools either.

Val said...

Way way WAY behind on my surfin'!
(but Z & I are still on OUR lil' vacation - boo hoo, the last night!) - better go check on him now, I know there's absolutely NO CHANCE he may have conked out ahead of me; he has way more stamina!