Took the family on a diabolical road trip last week. What makes a road trip diabolical, you ask? Well, what would you call loading an old Volkswagon Passat wagon with energetic six and four year olds for an 8 hour drive with nothing in the way of entertainment but a pack of colorful pipe cleaners and some books-on-tape? I call it Diabolical Fahrvergnügen.
Surprisingly, the ragamuffins were quite content to pass the time eating snacks, chewing gum and making a host of pipe cleaner sculptures, though they were elated to arrive at our first destination: Sedona, AZ. For those who have never been, I’ll break it down: unbelievable natural beauty and amazing energy encased in giant red mountainous outcrops from the desert floor. For some reason, our human hubris thought it wise to improve upon this inspiring natural phenomenon by adding a few golf courses and spa resorts with a healthy sprinkling of crystal shops, psychic aura photo stands, and southwestern Kokopelli public artwork. Now, I myself am a natural gem lover and have been known to heartily discuss energy centers and vortexes, but marketing these ideas to the tourist crowd of white folks in khakis as they play a round of golf and shop for ‘native crafts’ with not a native in sight, is not my cup of tea.
The visit was quite successful though, as we got the opportunity to explore the Red Rocks, muse about the dinosaur bones buried in the layers of compacted red clay, build a stone Cairn city, eat ice cream every night, and most importantly, pick up a new tag line: Wear the Flair. I mean, really, Wear the Flair? Unbeatable.Our trip continued to the small town of Mesa AZ, which was the rendezvous point for a secret bow tie exchange with two very gracious brothers. These brothers thanked me for my box of silky sweets by grabbing some instruments and heading onstage for a rousing concert under the alias of The Avett Brothers. The ragamuffins enjoyed the show so thoroughly that they ‘slept the whole night long and woke with a head full of songs’.
We packed the snacks, books-on-tape, colorful pipe cleaners, ragamuffins with heads full of songs, and the new tag line back into the Volkswagon Passat wagon and headed down the road, with big wheels turning, back to the Golden State where there was some Social Distortion involved… but that’s a whole other post.