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Here We Go Again

July 28, 2013

The concept of tradition is so strong in Judaism that there are even rules for how to establish a tradition. In a nutshell, it amounts to this: if you do something three times it becomes an official tradition, and traditions are followed almost as seriously as if they were actual laws.

Tomorrow the Hamster and I hit the highway for the third time, thus officially turning our multistate father-son summer road trips from a crazy idea I had a few years ago into an official tradition. Regular readers of this blog may remember that, just before the first road trip, I wrote about how nervous I was about all that could go wrong on such an adventure. Instead, just about everything went just right and a new tradition was born. Now the road trip is something we spend all year reminiscing about, planning, and anticipating. People who were once incredulous that I would dare to make such an ambitious pipe dream a reality now routinely ask me, “So where are you and Sam going this summer?”

Our past trips have been so outlandish that I feel a bit sheepish admitting that this year’s trip will take us through “only” six states and will put a mere 2,500 miles or so on the car. A few years ago, spending three weeks on the road squeezing as much fun as we can out of Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Canada, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Connecticut would’ve seemed insane. Now it seems almost wimpy. But wimpy or not, we’re going to see parts of the country we’ve never seen and soak up history, nature, kitschy tourist traps, and everything else in between, and we’re going to have a great time doing it.

And, like most traditions, little rituals have sprung up that sometimes seem almost as important as the tradition itself. The planning of the itinerary, the checking of baseball teams’ schedules, and the asking of far-flung friends for advice on what to do and see in their area are just a few now-annual activities. Just last week the Hamster reminded me that we have to take a picture of the car sitting in front of our house all packed up before we leave. And I know it seems a little silly, but my favorite part of the build-up to the trip is going to Costco to buy the giant barrel of pretzels we get every time; there’s something about that purchase that both solidifies the reality that, yeah, we’re really doing this, and reminds me throughout the sometimes overwhelming planning process that we’re going to have so much fun that eating a billion pretzels is not even close to being the best part.

So here we are, veterans who now know exactly what to pack, how to most efficiently fill up the car, and which traditions to adhere to, but at the same time we’re the same wide-eyed kids who can’t wait to see what new parts of this extraordinary country has to offer. The Adventure Boys, as the Hamster has been calling us, have our big barrel of pretzels and we’re back at it. Here we go again … 


2 Comments leave one →
  1. Michaelle Gorman permalink
    July 28, 2013 2:29 pm

    As Noah says, “I’m very exciting of this!!!” Super well written as always and I look forward to reading it daily w/my morning coffee! Happy trails to you!

    Sent from my iPhone

  2. Yehuda Lazarp permalink
    July 28, 2013 5:08 pm

    Enjoy, the trip. I guess I won’t see you on Tuesday.

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