Monday, August 30, 2010

The MB

Sean and Julian and I just returned from a week+ trip to Myrtle Beach for a family reunion.  We had a grand time. Here are some of the highlights.

Road trips! Now that we have our fancy car, we thought, let's DRIVE there!  Since Julian insists on stopping every once in a while to look at the scenery and get some postcards, we knew it would be a longer trip than the 12 hours it said it would be, but man alive! So much driving. And so much crap in the car.   Wow.  

Here's a map of our route:

I drove us out of here and let me say again, NYC driving is madness. And guess what? I love it. It kind of turns me into a crazy lady. I get a wild look in my eye. I might start muttering under my breath or even throw out a swear, but it's all in good fun. 

Our GPS lady.  She's a bit severe, a little admonishing, and we owe her our very lives.  The brand is Garmin so we often refer to it as that, but at one point Sean was talking about Judy Garland and somehow GPS lady was named Judy Garmin.   So many jokes arose from Judy.   I'll try to recall and document them here the best I can:

We joked about how she admonishes you for making a mistake. Just the tone in her voice. "RECALCULATING."    So of course we add on to it in a robot lady voice-- "Recalculating. You idiot. Where did you learn to drive."     

Since the trip was many hours long broken into 2 days, we thought she should be a tour guide as well.
"On your left you will see the battleship North Carolina. What are you doing. Eyes on the road. you idiot. Recalculating." 

Sometimes she'd direct us in a way that was a little roundabout, and we could see a more direct way and take it. Then we imagined her reply.
"I... see you've found an alternate route.  I will allow it. Carry on."

"What. You think you know more than I do, do you. Fine. Shutting down. Good luck. Idiots."  


"Think you're so smart. Drive to highlighted route.  Drive 1,740 miles on I-64. Do what I say.  We'll see where you end up. Ha. Ha. Ha."


"Oh. Yes. That is a better way. I...cannot compute. Processor overload. Beeeooooooooo..."  (<-- shutting down)

And then there were general jokes, like how after driving a 100-mile stretch without hearing from her she'd suddenly pipe in, "In .7 miles, take exit 13, on right" and how we felt like she was always there, listening to our conversation, creeping us out.  We thought sometime she was going to jump in about what we were talking about, "I disagree with you Sean. Iceland IS a part of Europe. Would you like to go there? Recalculating. Drive to highlighted route."

I'm reminded of an episode of The Office when Michael and Dwight use the GPS and follow it so religiously, they drive into a pond.   I'm pretty sure I would do that too.  "But she said! Judy said!"

I feel like the Judy jokes were nonstop but that's all I can remember of them.
Now, time for a Sean quote.

On the return trip, I drove us back into the city. It's funny how normal the driving and roads are until you get closer to the city. As if the city gives off this actual palpable energy, it's also manifest in the driving and bridges too. I guess it's just so many people condensing so quickly but you totally notice a difference.  And i guess this makes perfect sense and everyone reading this is like, duh, Jen. It's the city.  But still! It's just kind of weird to move into it. Like you've been driving in nice weather and all of a sudden you've entered a storm. It's weird.  Anyway, so there are more people cutting off, cars getting closer, more random driving. Roads and signs making less sense.  It's annoying and unnerving until you just adapt to it (and throw out some swears). Then it's fine.  And exhilarating, i'll say it again.  

Jen thinking thoughts, driving on some bridge, hands gripping wheel. Somewhat out of the blue, and a little maniacally, blurts:

"Let's move to Manhattan!!"

Sean: What? Shuduuuuup...

Jen: I just feel like--this energy!  It's so crazytown! and I think, why am i not in in the heart of it?!?

Sean: Wherever you are is the heart of crazytown.
 And then we started singing BINGO to entertain the baby, until skipping letters and trying to sing it the real way & drive was making my brain explode. 

Number of states we drove in: 7.  New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina.
Number of  capitals we drove in or near, or at least saw signs for: 5, maybe 6.  And also the capital of our NATION! woot.  For some reason i loved this.

Number of tolls paid on the way there: 5
Total amount paid in tolls (one way): $25.75
Total: Probably around $40'ish.

We played some more nerdy geography games.  Taking turns giving a country in separate continents.  I won Europe by holding onto Iceland until the end, which Sean disputed as not being part of Europe. What??   Anyway, then we went to country capitals.  Good fun.  Throughout the drive i just wanted to visit everywhere. "Let's just take this road and see where it goes!"  "I've never been this far south before!"   "Let's go to Mississippi!"

So, 3 cheers for the ocean. I just can't cheer enough. Every time I visit it I wonder why in the heavens do I not live closer to it? And then i remember I live on an island and I sit here and ponder on that. But still, this beach was great. So clean and sandy. The water was ridiculously warm. The waves beautiful, majestic. Smacked me in the back of the head so i face-planted several times.  Water up the nose. Ah yeah. That says it all.

Lazy River.  This resort had several pools and lazy rivers. Our suites were located adjacent to 2 lazy rivers so we visited these nightly and made up lame games which is what family reunions are all about, am I right. 

Julian loved and hated the beach.  He loved it in that he got to get dirty but hated it in that sand in the ol' eyes is the opposite of fun. Also, he had a cold this entire trip which SUCKS.  I think the beach is the last place i want to be when i have a cold. But he put up with it so well.   He enjoyed the pools and watching his cousins run circles around him.  In the end, he had probably the best tan of all of us.

South Carolina was a little different from other places of the country I've visited. I've seen mountainous areas, hot hot deserts with cacti,  lovely temperate climates with palm trees.  South Carolina had the palms but it was pretty green too.  Nice.  It had a bit of the southern feel but I'm not sure how much of it we got. I found it very odd that many people there had a southern accent. I'm not used to being in a place where the people all talk the same. How about that?   I was like, "what, you too?"

Mega-highlight:  All the Chik-fil-A's!!!!   (<--using that apostrophe at my own discretion) When I visit Utah, this is always on my list of must-dos.  In the old days when we'd visit Ohio, we'd sometimes have a layover in Cincinnati which also had a Chik-fil-a. Know how I know that? Because i love chick-fil-a and it was the one good thing about that Cincinnati airport.  Though it now makes perfect sense, never did I dream i'd come across so many Chick-fil-a's on our trip.  But we were heading south.  And from what i understand, the South loves the fried chicken.  As do i.     I think we stopped more than twice.

Jen: I can't do anything else until i get some nuggets. NUGGETS.

Judy Garmin:  What. Again. Why don't you just set the initial coordinates to every Chik-fil-A from here to Myrtle Beach. Forget it. I'm doing it for you. Recalculating.

We enjoyed our time with the family and seeing sights and swimming and choking on the salt water.  I'm arbitrarily putting up pictures of the trip on the other blog so that this post isn't quite as eternal.  Go check it out! 


Brooke said...

Jen, I heart this post. And, come to think of it, all your posts. Kudos.

Also, guess what? American Fork just got a Chik-fil-A. Not joking. I'll be eating nuggets every night. Go ahead and be jealous.

Annie said...

"You are the heart of crazy town"?! I want to be Sean.

Alanna said...

I love Chick-fil-A. They are THE most kid-friendly fast-food place I've ever been to. Even if I didn't like their food, I'd go there just for that. But it ALSO turns out that their milkshakes are wonderful.

I also love snotty computer voices, especially when they're female. When I was a kid, we played this video game (on a Texas Instruments "computer," WAAAAAY before Nintendo) called "Alpiner" where you would try to climb mountains. If you got to far, the video game would just rain down a rock slide on you and kill you and this great female voice would either say, "You forgot to duck" (not that there was any "duck" command) or, my personal favorite, "Nice move, sport." My sisters and I always look for reasons to say that to each other.

Nice move, Sport.

lindsey v said...

This was a funny post. I've never had a GPS but while reading this I think I imagined the voice in a Jetson's maid voice. That might be a little too robotic. I'm sure it's a more pleasant voice than that.

Also, the American Fork Chick-fil-A is now the closest one to me too. Mmmmmm....