Monday, June 11, 2012

Summer Vacation

The other night I was lying awake (which happens often) and remembered travelling as a youngster on vacation, and I was thinking about some of the complaints I have heard from students about their travels, so to put things in perspective, here are some tidbits of vacationing a few decades ago.

No cell phones, internet, or in some cases, even phones where we were going. You could not check Facebook. Believe it or not, you went on vacation and didn't talk to your friends. And they survived. And so did you.

We did not have thousands of songs and movies in our pocket, internet in the car, DVD players or anything like that. We had these things called books. Or looking out the window. If you wanted music you brought a pile of your most precious tapes and a walkman with plenty of extra AA batteries. And we used the headpones that came with your tape player. If they broke you couldn't go to Wal-Mart and get new ones, you lived with a broken piece of metal jabbing you in the scalp.

You were able to take 24 pictures throughout your vacation. And you didn't get to see them right away. So after trying to get that perfect shot you would have to wait until after the vacation to get the film developed, pay $20 and wait another week only to find a blurry grey blob and you trying to remember what you took a picture of.

There were no vans with captains chairs. There was a big huge backseat with an imaginary line that divided your area from your sibling's area. Occasionally someone (or their stuff) would cross the line leading to a heated debate and parents demanding silence, to which you would retreat to your music on tape that is sounding a little warbled from dying batteries and a piece of metal jabbing you in the scalp.

There were also no exits every 2 miles. Going to the bathroom was few and far between and meals were either at the only greasy diner we could find or sandwiches someone made the night before that were now warm and mushy, eaten at a picnic table on the side of the road which for some reason had no trees anywhere near it.

So for all you weary travellers this summer who have to endure the suffering of a personal Laz-Y-Boy in an air conditioned vehicle with the world at your fingertips, I have zero sympathy for you. Go enjoy vacation.


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