July 4, Day 4 Road Trip
There is No 3rd Option!!!!!!!!!!!
First thing early morning, I took Henry out for a walk along the shore. I started talking to a few people down the beach and they told me that a huge wind storm came and toppled people’s easy-ups and shade structures. Chairs went flying and there was sand everywhere. When I returned to our camp, I told Steve that’s what happened and he said he didn’t care. His shade structure couldn’t be used anymore and regardless, he was such an “idiot”, should have reeled the awning back in before we left for Vegas. (Wow, self deprecation before coffee.) Still pouting, the idea the wind was responsible, didn’t give him any comfort.
The morning started off like the morning before, Miro and I playing in the river, Henry chasing the pups next door. Greg sat in one of the chairs with his hat on and was content sitting there doing nothing. Steve was doing busy work, trying to repair the shade structure and “tinkering” with whatever he could get his hands on.
After breakfast, Steve announced he wanted to leave. I told him I really like this place, we were already set up and I really didn’t want to be traveling today, on the 4th of July.
“No, I want to get out of here.” Steve said authoritatively and since it was his van and camper, he knew he had that authority. This, I think was the beginning of what was to come….
Begrudgingly, we packed up, hitched the camper and hit the road.
Greg got into the back of the van and pretended to sleep, while the apparent tension in the van was growing. We stopped off in the cute town of Kingman, on route 66 for lunch and all was well. After lunch, we were able to browse for about 20 minutes in a 2nd hand store, while Steve fiddled with the camper some more. Steve was growing impatient of our browsing, had a route in mind and just wanted to get moving. So off we went.
Around 3:00 we made it to the Hoover Dam, which was quite extraordinary. We waited for about 30 minutes to take the winding road down, took pictures and Steve started to lighten up, telling stories of the last time he made this trip with his Dad and brother. It was nice to hear…and I was able to experience the dam for myself for the first time AND through the eyes of Steve as he shared his stories of his Dad and brother’s trip, years before. The dam was huge, and I was in awe of it’s sheer scale. Definitely, was quite a sight to see.
We passed through the dam and hit the open road once again. Everything was fairly going well, even though there was an apparent edge in the air and Miro and I fed off this energy, tried to make it lighter and turned into a comedy duo… tight-rope walking just on the outskirts of uncomfortableness. Miro and I were enjoying some private jokes as Steve became more and more annoyed with us. Then, I asked Steve where we were camping that night. I told Steve that I wanted to stop driving soon, and set up camp. I told him that since it was the fourth of July, I didn’t really want to spend much more time in the car, driving.
He snapped. He blurted out “We’ll get there when we get there!” Then he said “I am tired of you two (Miro and I) always having an opinion about where we are going. I’ve done this trip many times before and I know the route!”
Then with that, he pulled the van over, got out, walked around to the passengers’ side door, where I was sitting, opened the door, and said. “You have a better idea, YOU DRIVE!”
Greg just kept his head down laying on the air mattress on the back of the van. Miro and I looked at each other and laughed, which in hind sight, may have not been the best thing to do.
Steve walked around on the side of the road for a bit, then got back into the van. He pulled out the maps and studied them for a good 10 minutes. Then, in silence, he started the van. We kept our mouths shut for the next hour but tried to contain ourselves from giggling.
After about an hour, he pulled off to another campground at Lake Mead. I was relieved. When we pulled into the massive campsites, there were several options. There was the public beach route with small crowded camp sites. As we investigated those, we discovered there were no dogs allowed. There was a section for camper hook ups, actually very expensive sites, well above the lake, and not walking distance. When Steve asked which we prefer, the camper hook up area or the beach I said:
“I don’t like either option. What’s the third option?”
Steve yelled “THERE IS NO THIRD OPTION!!” and again Miro and I had to contain ourselves from cracking up..
We drove around a bit more and found the campground somewhere in the middle, but it didn’t’ have hook ups for the night. That’s ok, I supposed. Steve wanted to find a place that wasn’t’ close to other people and he choose the camp site. We unhooked the camper and tried to get settled.
I asked Steve if I could take the van to go back up to town to buy some ice, beers, and other cold drinks, while he fiddled with the plumbing system in the camper. Miro, Greg and I piled back into van and actually had a break from the tension. We picked up beer, ice and fireworks and when we returned, Steve had finished off most of the remaining tequila..
We made dinner, lit off a few of the fireworks and made the best of it. We were all exhausted and the dynamic of our group was at a once again at a manageable level. We remained at camp, drawing exquisite corpses, doing mad-libs and of course drinking until we wore ourselves out.
…Thus was our (dependent) celebration of independence.