We slowly ascended the mountain, switchback after switchback. We observed the majestic views with joy and awe and we closely observed the steep drop-offs next to the road with fear and apprehension. More than once during the drive, someone uttered the phrase: “I can’t believe there’s not a guard rail here!” As the driver, I slowed down and closely hugged the center line.
After 19 miles of switchbacks, drop-offs, and being stuck behind even slower looky-loos, we arrived at the summit: 14,110 feet above sea level. Pikes Peak. The inspiration for the lyrics to ‘America The Beautiful’. What a view!
At the summit, we joined the hordes of other tourists standing in the cool wind, thankful for the break from the 100 degree weather at the base of the mountain. We wandered around the viewing deck, oohing and aahing. We commemorated the moment with many, many pictures.
Except for Squeak.
She commemorated the summit in her own, oh-so-special way.
You’ve heard the phrase “Pikes Peak or Bust”? Well, Squeak went for bust. More specifically, she busted a poo. Right out of her diaper and onto my leg. I ran for the van, hollering at the husband for help. Considering how little oxygen there is at that altitude, I was quite proud of how quickly I ran. We laid her down in the back to assess the damage: poo on her clothes, my clothes, up her back, and down her legs. So much poo we ran out of wipes and had to wet a stack of napkins.
Later, cleaned up and recovered from our ordeal, we sat on the summit talking about the incident. I told Squirt that someday, when she is 90 years old and her little sister is 80 years old, they’ll be sitting in their rocking chairs chatting. Something will happen that will bring back a memory of this day, and Squirt will tell her sister the story of the family drive up Pike’s Peak. And as she recalls the commemorative poo, she’ll giggle so hard her dentures will jiggle loose.
And THAT is exactly why family vacations are worth every dime!
Imagine YOUR children, decades from now, reminiscing about long-ago family vacations. What vacations do you think will be remembered? Are there memorable moments from your childhood vacations that still make you giggle?
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