Sunday, December 9, 2007

Somewhere Else for Christmas ...

There have been a couple of times when I have not been in my hometown to celebrate Christmas. Of those few times, I have spent time in Florida visiting relatives. Two of the times my family and I have gone to Florida, I think it was because it was easier for us to go visit our relatives than it was for them to come up to Michigan.

For both trips, we drove down to Florida, and it would take us two days to get down to where our relatives lived. One of the years that we went down was 1998. That was the year that we had a Ford Expedition. I remember when we were driving through Tennessee, my dad noticed that the price of gas per gallon was $0.69. Needless to say, my dad got off the highway and filled up our gas tank. Later, my dad said that he had not paid that amount for gas since the '70s. (And that was a novelty. Remember when we thought a $1.30 per gallon was expensive? How would we know that within about a decade we would be paying about twice that amount?)

Once we got to Florida, we stayed with relatives. We did not stay in a hotel. While we were down there, we visited a flea market and the Ponce De Leon lighthouse. I remember climbing all the way up to the top of the lighthouse, and when I had to go back down, I was so afraid that I had to hold onto my dad's hand. I also remember that at the beginning of the trip the temperature was in the 70s and that was it very humid. I could actually wear shorts. (For being someone who has experienced almost every Christmas in Michigan, it is a novelty.)

Other tings that I remember is that the only thing in the news on the way down was about the sex scandal in the White House. I also remember that while I was down in Florida, the Midwest got hit by a snow storm. The Detroit airport got about six inches of snow, and had problems clearing the snow which resulted in backlogs and the stranding of people at the airport. It was a total disaster. On the way home, I remember that we were racing to get home because another snow storm was on the way home and we did not want to get caught in it. We were lucky, and we made it home the day before the storm hit. On January 3rd, the storm hit. My parents still went to work, but my brother and I stayed home because school had been canceled. Of course this storm only added to the problems at the Detroit airport. Even after school reopened, I remember that some students were not back in school. (One classmate and her family got stuck in Hawaii, and I clearly remember the teacher saying, "Nice place to get stuck at.")

After reading over this, it is hard for me to believe that it has almost been a decade since this has all happened. I don't think I ever imagined then what I would be doing in ten years.

1 comment:

Apple said...

Hawaii would be a lovely place to wait out a snow storm. We did travel once in December (not at Christmas) and thought we wouldn't be able to get home - no such luck. I'd love to have a palm tree Christmas some year.