Do you think it was my seat in the back of the car?
No, it was not.
My older sister sat in that seat behind my mother. My younger sister sat in the middle. My brother sat on my mothers lap. Yes, you read that right. He was 2 years old then. It was before car seats for children were mandatory. If there had been an accident, he would have been mashed potatoes. The dashboard on the old cars were as hard as a wall.
I was in the back seat but on the other side right behind my father. There wasn’t any air conditioning. The windows were wide and rolled down the minute you got in the car.
For me, it was always ‘The ride from hell’. My fathers was a chain smoker. He smoked the best ones from that era. You know ‘Camels’. The unfiltered cigarette kind. They were very short which meant you had to pop another one in your mouth as soon as the first one was finished. I had the pleasure of inhaling nicotine and carcinogen chemicals on every car ride. As the wind blew into the car, along came the smoke and ashes right at me.
I have. It’s disgusting.
I was always car sick. There were many times he had to stop the car so I could vomit. It wasn’t pretty. Everyone would mock me for my delicate system and the tactics I had of spoiling everyones enjoyment of their Sunday drive.
The seats in the summer were always burning hot. There wasn’t a summer day I didn’t scorch my skinny legs on those seat. Eventually, after a lot of complaining, my mother decided to take a towel and lay it on the seat for us just before we’d leave. But only after spoiled favorite daughter #1 – the oldest – complained.
We’d arrive at our destination – a park, the beach or one of their friends house and I’d have to sit until the dizzy feeling would pass. Seltzer was the beverage I had to drink in order to settle my stomach while the others drank cokes.
I think about the fact that I do have those Sunday drives as a memory.
I just wish they could have been more fun for me.