Sunday, July 27, 2014
As we have talked about this trip with people, their main questions have been basically, "How?" and, "Why?" The answer to the first question will hopefully be answered within the text of the posts. The answer to the second question is easily summed up as follows: We do this because we get our family to ourselves for an entire month. No friends, no lessons, no house cleaning or yard work. We also do it becuase we live a sheltered life in our little monoculture town, and we like to introduce "the world" to our kids on our own terms. We see new and interesting (and sometimes disturbing) things, and then we have hours in the car to talk about what we saw and discuss things together. We also do it because we can. An endeavor like this is not for everyone. It requires a LOT of what my Dad would call "hassle." You have to be willing to put up with a lot of inconvenience associated with being on the road. If that's not your cup of tea, than don't do it! We camp most nights, prepare most of our own food, and even wash our dishes. Showering in public showers or in a bathing suit under our solar shower, or going without a shower for longer than you would like is not everyone's idea of fun. Especially for a family with 5 girls. But for some reason, it's worth it to us, all of us. I'll never understand why our kids don't complain when I expect that they will, why they somehow just suck up the hard times and revel in the good times, but they do. We do it because it brings us closer as a family and teaches us to deal with inconvenience in stride and appreciate all of the conveniences we usually have. We do it for all of the "magic moments" that happen when you least expect them.