Taking vacation back to the open road: Ann Norman

Ann Norman is editor of the Sun Newspapers.

Can we get some love for the good old summer road trip?

In these days of less-than-relaxing air travel, and despite the cringe-inducing price of gasoline, I’m thinking a return to the open road – winding though it may be – is calling my name when it comes to vacation travel.

This spring, my husband, his brother and our sister-in-law flew the not-so-friendly skies to enjoy a week of spring training baseball in Arizona. The trip was great – except for the time spent in the airports.

What with canceled flights, delays, long lines to check in, malfunctioning check-in computers, the rush-rush-rush TSA rigamarole (my husband actually lost his driver’s license in the hectic juggling of shoes and carry-on bags and impatient business travelers behind us), paying extra for those carry-on bags, squishing my personal item into an ever-shrinking compartment under the airplane seat (and the ever-shrinking seats themselves), I was ready to turn around and go back home.

Everyone was grumpy, travelers and airline workers alike.

Compare that to our 12-hour road trip to Kansas City a few weeks ago. Aside from some road construction in St. Louis, it was an enjoyable time. My husband and I chatted about anything but work, listened to music and podcasts, stopped whenever we felt like it for a snack or to stretch our legs.

We could pack whatever we wanted – no running out of sunscreen on this vacation for us. The seats in our Honda HRV were plenty comfortable, and no one stepped on our toes or dropped their luggage on our heads at the end of our journey.

It of course brought back happy core memories of our family road trips as a child. My parents thought nothing of tossing the kids,

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