A couple of years ago we drove to Florida. We would have preferred to fly, but the cost of five airline tickets convinced us otherwise. As I packed for the trip, I was determined to make our 18 hours on the road as enjoyable as possible.
So away we went with a tote full of electronic gadgets, movies, music, travel-sized board games and my long list of “games to play in the car.” And you know what? It was actually pretty fun!
At one point, we started listening to songs that were popular when I was a kid. Memories from my childhood started flooding back. I couldn’t resist telling the girls all about them.
Head over Heels by the Go-Go’s reminded me of junior high skating parties. Eye of the Tiger reminded me of playing in the band at high school basketball games. Footloose reminded me of when I tried out for Pom Pon my freshman year.
Curt joined in, admitting that when he was a paperboy, he listened to the entire Footloose soundtrack (on cassette tape of course!) every day as he delivered newspapers.
Who could have guessed that a bunch of old songs could spark so much conversation? The kids learned more about us (probably more than they cared to know), and for awhile, we remembered what it was like to be a kid.
Another thing that made the drive more enjoyable was stopping in Nashville. Normally Curt is a big advocate of driving straight through on long road trips. This time we spent a day in Nashville. We watched a show at the Grand Ole Opry, visited the Country Music Hall of Fame, and ate some great BBQ at the Wild Horse Saloon.
By the time we arrived in Florida, we’d already made many great memories.
When I think about that trip to Florida, it reminds me of some things I need to keep in mind as I pursue my writing goals. Maybe you’ll find these helpful as well.
Learn all you can along the way.
Madison learned how to read a map. Taylor learned that she actually liked Billy Joel. By the time we got there, we’d all learned something new!
Celebrate small accomplishments.
Reaching your destination can be great, but it's also the end of that particular journey. I don’t want to be so focused on the destination that I forget to enjoy the steps it took to get there. Our main goal was to hit the beach, but every time we crossed a state line we celebrated. No matter how long the trip, I want to enjoy the journey.
Don’t give up. You might be closer than you think.
It’s always fun when a girl falls asleep – and then wakes up in another state. “What? We’re in Florida? Yaaay!”
I'm sure there'll be some unpleasant experiences along the way to achieving my goals. Aching legs. Road construction. Motion sickness. But persevering through it all makes reaching the destination that much sweeter!
*Road photo by seaskylab / www.freedigitalphotos.net