It’s my opinion and nobody can change it.

Our family went on many vacations.  For the most part they were great.  The bus ride, the campfires, the beach house rental when we drove the convertible Lincoln Continental up to Aptos, the trip to Canada, only to stay for one night!  But one in particular was the car trip from California to Minnesota.  We were visiting Carrie Lou (nickname used out of pure endearment) while she was working, I think as an intern, but I could be way off.  It was 1973 and I was a freshmen in high school, or was just about to be one.  So I was certainly more interested in anything else besides older family siblings and what they were doing.  None the less, Mom and Dad made a vacation out of it.  I remember well (or at least I think) that Patsy kept this journal.  It was a spiral notebook and the title was “It’s my opinion and nobody can change it.”  That sums up the trip.  It may even sum up what it’s like living as part of a big family.

It would be hard for me to suggest a favorite vacation.  I’ve mentioned Wilsonia already and the ones depicted here.  I’m trying to recall the others.  There was the Grand Canyon, Hawaii, but that was without Mom and right after Dad had passed away.  There was no Facebook to keep track on a timeline, but with 12 minds working together (cough, cough), I’m sure we could recall most all of them.  At least that’s my opinion.  I wonder where that notebook is today.


5 thoughts on “It’s my opinion and nobody can change it.

  1. That was a great trip. I remember the “funhouse” and ordering sasspiralla(sp) at Wall Drug, pitching tents at the Grand Canyon and always hoping there would be either a pool or at least a pool table at each of the KOA’s we visited.

  2. And speaking of price differences from the early ’70s — a mere 40 years!! — what about the fact that two or three of us were riding in the open back of Dad’s white Chevy El Camino for at least 1,600 miles headed East on that trip. At some point Dad got a new Vet Pack put on the back but I know we were using the bed as seats at least till KC. As we crossed the state line, Patsy and I were back there. We sang our way into Kansas with a new song (lyrics by Patsy, tune by Al Jolson) “Kansas City Here I Come”. The lyrics, unparalleled in their simplicity and poignancy, included “… right back where I didn’t start from… where bowers of flowers don’t bloom in the sun… each morning at dawning birds don’t sing at everything…” you get the gist. I remember a strong strain of defiance and a need to establish our superiority over every Kansan (within ear shot of our 60 mph mobile concert stage) that we were in fact from California and certainly not from Kansas… though with our Grapes of Wrath stylized seating on the twin mattress stretched the length of the El Camino’s bed, my guess is no one from Kansas minded not getting to claim us as one of theirs!

  3. The last time I saw THAT notebook was in the cupboard near Mom’s computer. That was years ago so who knows where it is now. Thinking about keeping that journal makes me laugh – mainly because I’m pretty sure it is full of things like price of gas and what was purchased at the grocery store – which might be interesting now, considering what we pay now for gas and groceries. Anyway, it wasn’t much of a journal but I do remember the mantra, “It’s my opinion and no one can change it” which I believed was the title of the thing. Sounds like the writing of a 13 year old, for sure.
    Good times!

    1. Good times, for sure! And what about that bumper sticker…Wall Drug (or something close to that)…I remember it flew out the window somewhere on the plains of South Dakota! That shut us up for a while!
      The picture was of our final destination…the headwaters of the great Mississppi, and although the picture does not necessarily reflect it, I think we thought that was an incredible thing. I remember that a number of us got to rent a little row boat and went out on the lake (Lake Itasca), but it was a stormy kind of day and mom and dad yelled at us to row to shore so that we didn’t get struck by lightening…it scared us and we rowed like crazy!

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