Traveling with kids is not what it used to be. I remember riding in the back cargo area of my parents Subaru wagon eating Wendy’s french fries and Frostys. We were dipping our french fries in chocolate goodness while traveling at 65 mph without being in a seat, let alone using seatbelts.
My three brothers and I would ride in our Dad’s pickup stacked up like cord wood. We bigger kids would hold the two smaller on our laps. While always a preferred seat, in the heat of summer, fights for the window in an un-air conditioned truck would reach WW III status. Seatbelts? They were just cloth straps with scorching hot pieces of metal to be avoided at all costs in the summer. During the winter, they were all but forgotten, unless they were deemed to be good weapons to use on one’s siblings.
I can recall with great clarity the time I decided jumping out of my mom’s Subaru in the driveway would be a good idea. I was pre-schoolish age, and we were still living in town at the time. I remember thinking how fun it would be to jump out of the car, tuck and roll like they did on television. So I tried it one night while mom pulled into the driveway. Have I mentioned that I wasn’t the brightest little kiddo on the block? Thankfully, no bones were broken.
While I’m sure my brothers and I had carseats, I just can’t remember them. I remember riding in the front seat, or rather the epic battles for the front seat. I have memories of sitting on the floor next to the door of our minivan when I was close to Jr High age.
YEESH! Now the thought of driving out of the garage without my seatbelt on about gives me a panic attack!
So on this Labor Day Weekend as you travel to destinations near and far, with your seatbelt snug across your chest and lap and (if you have any!) your kiddos securely tucked into their carseat. and think: Wow…how in the world did we survive? I mean, c’mon! How did our parents not strangle us after hearing ‘I CALL FRONT’ for the 100 millionth time? Let alone the wrestling match that would usually turn into a true battle to the death (or end with the threat of death from one of the parents!) after those dreaded words were shouted!
Mom and Dad, bless you for not killing us out of frustration!