Monday, June 30, 2008

Road Trip Day 2 (or the kids get unruly and we see squirrels)

We got an earlier start today. Way earlier, actually, thanks to Riley coming in our room at 6:15 saying he had to go poop. I helped him out and got him back in bed a few minutes later. Luckily, Haley was still asleep and didn’t wake when Riley hopped back to bed. I went back to bed and, just as I was falling back asleep, Riley decided to join us again. This was about half an hour later.

Anyway, Marci and Rye got up and I lazed around in bed awhile longer. A few minutes later I heard pounding up the stairs (we were in a loft. Pretty cool) and then saw Haley next to me in her bathing suit and towel, telling me to join her, Rye and Marci in the “hot pool” outside.

We hot tubbed for a few minutes, then got on with breakfast and getting ready for the road. A few hours later, we were packed, later than we would’ve liked, and on our way.

We headed southeast and crossed into California about 10 minutes or so into our trip. The trip was through some mountain range which included Mt. Shasta and it was quite pretty. We did a bunch of passing of semis (there are a TON going both ways there) and generally kept it at 1 to 2 mph above the speed limit. I wasn’t too interested in getting another speeding ticket today. I figured we’d be a little slower, but also in less trouble.

The trip through the mountain range was pretty uneventful aside from Haley and Riley being complete turds the whole way. They didn’t get to sleep until about 10 or so and were both up and at ‘em quite early, so, naturally, they were sniping and crabby for much of the morning.

We got to I-5 and started heading south. It was a pretty mountainous drive. Pretty soon, it got really smoky too, as I guess they are having a lot of lightning caused wildfires. The smoke was quite intense, mainly in the hills. The kids were still ornery and no fun, but Marci and I just tried to go with the flow.

Pretty soon, as is customary with Riley, he had to go poop. Right now. Trouble was, the next rest stop was about 15 miles away. So we headed to the next exit, and, ever the boy scout (Be Prepared), Marci had a portable toilet. Riley sat on his little portapotty and did his thing. I should’ve taken a picture.

We made fairly good time the rest of the way. I traded driving duties with Marci later in the day. She drove through Sacramento and to our final destination at Angels Camp. The last 50 miles or so to Angels Camp were quite beautiful. I have never been to the savannah in Africa, but in my fertile imagination, I envision it to be like the terrain we drove through. Hopefully the pictures I took with the camera out of the car do the visuals justice.

Today’s lodging isn’t as nice as yesterday’s, but it is entirely functional. We went from a beautiful, lodge-style chalet to a more traditional, apartment-style abode. It’s nice. There are a lot of wild squirrels and lizards out the back deck. We went for a swim at the pool, though it seemed like a neighborhood free-for-all with everyone and anyone simply letting themselves in. We got to have a home-cooked meal, courtesy of Marci. Tacos!

And now it’s the Battle to Get the Kids Asleep. We put them down about 8:45 or so (they both napped briefly in the car, which usually screws them up for the rest of the night) and now, at 9:30, they’re both still up. It doesn’t help that they’re both in the same room, but splitting them up doesn’t help either. The main culprit is Riley. He’s just restless and impossible to handle when it’s late and he’s tired. Our best ally is patience and willpower to ignore, which, at 9:32 after driving 400 miles or so, we have none of.

Well, as with every night, they will fall asleep. Marci and I will get an hour or 2 to unwind, then we get to do it all again tomorrow morning, hopefully a little later than 6:15.

Tomorrow: onto our friend’s house in La Crescenta, about 300 miles from here. Wish us luck. Here is a squirrel.