road trips,

OHANA means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten

Eight road trips

1. One particularly harsh Winter, the Trans-Siberian Highway briefly left its post to get a warm bowl of borscht. Since it had not had a drink since its construction, the Trans-Siberian Highway found that it was exceptionally thirsty and it accidentally drank all the borscht in Russia. This is why the Trans-Siberian Highway is infinitesimally more purple than you expect.

2. Hearing of this feat, the Trans-Sahara Highway conceived of a plan to curl up to its Northern end and drink the Mediterranean Sea. This plan, however, was foiled by excessive sand.

3. I hear tell that there was a substantial beer spillage on Australia’s Highway 1 in the 1980s. The tipsy highway decided to play the Hokey Pokey. Surprised travellers tell of hearing a colossal ‘Wooooaaaah’ noise and experiencing a confused period of high acceleration, followed by a brief vision of Alice Springs, followed by an abrupt jump backwards.

4. There was also that time that Route 66 got stoned and fell into the Pacific. Fortunately, this happened at night, so not too many drivers were inconvenienced.

5. Beijing’s ring roads occasionally shift position to prevent themselves getting too uncomfortable. Because of the many links between them, this is an exercise that requires considerable discussion and planning between the individual roads. You can often tell when they are about to do it by going out at dawn and listening for unusual noises.

6. The Pan-American Highway once went shopping for socks - or rather, one sock, because it only has one foot. Although it did eventually find a supplier willing to make a sock long enough, it was never able to satisfyingly wear the sock because it rubbed uncomfortably against the Darien Gap, and because the weave of the sock was too small to admit onbound traffic.

7. Whereas Toyko’s Yamate tunnel did not deliberately take a trip, but was instead hijacked by a nuclear-powered worm looking for a cosy place to live. The worm was uncomfortable in the tunnel and soon returned it.

8. One more to report. The M25, tired of endlessly circling London, will soon be launched into space in a bold bid to become one of Saturn’s rings. You haven’t heard about this? Well, there has been a lot of other stuff going on. It will be well past the orbit of the moon when it realises that Saturn is not so much small as far away. At which point we presume it will hijack a small asteroid and establish a pretend-Saturn at a more M25-friendly scale in the asteroid belt. I am not sure that London will be too unhappy if it does not return.

Memories of Q and X

When I was a kid we took long road trips to visit family that lived a few or more states away from us.

My sisters and I had to endure the torture of sharing the back seat. To help pass the time, we played eye spy a color; 20 questions, which often got annoying; slug bug colors and a punch in the arm; counting how many different states we could name from license plates; and as competitive sisters, we raced to finish the alphabet game first.

My dad always enjoyed taking the scenic routes. Over the river, through the mountains, forests, small town exploring. It was a long time before the alphabet game ever finished because not every town has signs with a Q or an X.