We started off strong in Kentucky. Over the last few days my balloon started losing air for it. You guys know I’m fickle… it’s not a trait I’m proud to highlight but I don’t deny it either. I’m prone to extreme feelings – when things are great they’re larger than life. When things aren’t… we’re stuck in Dante’s fourth layer of hell (standing on your head in putrid matter, I believe). Ask Scott… I almost left Costa a Rica a week into my 3 week immersion program because it was “that bad” (side note: Costa Rica could never be that bad… it’s Costa Rica). I’m certainly not bipolar. I like to think of it more like being Italian. The passion burns deep.
My point? I’m really ready to get the heck out of dodge. I was standing in the campground shower yesterday after having bathed each kid and having to say “Don’t touch that, don’t touch that, don’t touch that….” 1,000,000 times. It was covered in mildew and dirt and generally smelled icky. The water wouldn’t drain, so when it was my turn I was ankle deep in grossness. There was only a plastic chair to put my things on… which I am grateful there was anything, but broken plastic chairs are depressing. The bare light bulb was hanging from the ceiling by a wire and all I could think of was Hitchcock. They’re having a festival here next week and it looks like the kind of bathroom you might expect at a festival. I closed my eyes and said out loud, “What the @$%@#$ are we doing? Is this really what I put everything on hold for?”
I share this so that we’re crystal clear: we’re having the time of our lives – and the biggest thrills are still to come – but it’s not all day hikes and sunsets. I don’t want to misrepresent us. There are parts of this lifestyle that are challenging to accept with grace and I’m not totally seamlessly moving from full-time professional to stay-at-home-mom on the road. There are plenty of warts.
Scott needed to focus on the company today. That’s hard to do with the kids and I around. So I packed us a little lunch and we took off around 10:30. Our first stop was the local park. This one had a few different sets of climbing things, swings, bars… plus it had a skate park. I sent a picture to Nate. It’s too bad he’s not here with us. He would have been the only one of us to know how to use it.
Then we hauled off to find old Abe Lincoln’s birthplace and childhood home. Expectations were low but I needed a destination. Wow, was I wrong!? Like… massively wrong. We stopped at his childhood home first. It’s a national historic park. The rangers were awesome. Evie actually really got into it when the rangers and I explained that a very important man had lived in that house when he was about her age. We talked about what his chores might have done and then… we went inside. I’m not revealing any spoilers when I say it was a simple 1 room log cabin with a fireplace and a window. She couldn’t wrap her mind around it. Then she wanted to know where the bathroom was and when I said there wasn’t one she stopped listening, thinking that I obviously had no idea what I was talking about.
We also hit up his birthplace which was an even bigger deal than his home. It’s not as grand as the monument in DC but… check this out. You’re literally in the middle of nowhere Kentucky and you find this. Yeah… oops. This feels like something I should have known about. Again, the kids did great. We played with lincoln logs in the visitors center, climbed the steps up to the monument and checked out the stream that his family used when they lived there. Round about that time I had to promise McD french fries on the way home to hold back a mutiny.
Jack is pulling Evie’s hair in this one. Well played, #2.