Lorna’s Gin-spiring Prompt #8 – Roadtrip #Ginspired

The lovely Lorna over at Gin & Lemonade With A Twist Blog has started a new writing prompt.

She hasn’t named her challenge, so I have – Lorna’s Gin-spiring Prompt!


This week, we have the word: Roadtrip

We’ve embarked upon some interesting road trips in our time.

I’m not talking about cross-country overseas trips, though we’ve made a few of those too in Kenya, on holiday when I was younger. I mean the general UK based ones of my childhood.

Those were the days, pre-seatbelt Nazi time. When no-one batted an eyelid if eight people slowly appeared out of a Mini Cooper. Perfect for those HUGE Indian families, anyway!

Our family was a conservative two adults, two children nuclear family, and we had our one car. There was no need for more. And when we had visitors, we’d just squash in!

I remember countless long drives from Birmingham to London and back when my brother and I would take turns to choose songs on the tape deck, and my mum would have to be the DJ, slowly rewinding, or forwarding the cassette to the right song. If it was late, one of us would lay across the seat, and the other along the footwell, so we could stretch out. I remember sometimes, as a toddler, laying across the back shelf too.

It was even better when my dad had his Citroen hatchback. You could remove the back shelf and deposit children in there too! We even had a special large cushion that my mum had made, complete with Mickey Mouse cover, that would sit at the bottom of the boot, so we were comfy! When my aunt and uncle visited with their two daughters, Pops would drive and my uncle sat at the front.

Pre-hatchback, my aunt and mum would sit at the back. Us three girls would be on laps of the middle of the seat at the back with them, and my brother on my uncle’s lap. When he whined or wanted mummy, he’d be passed through the front seat gap to the back and would swap with one of us. All exchanges happening in a moving car!

Post-hatchback, we would argue about who sat at the back, because it was actually quite fun to be in the boot! Who needed pets, when you had four children to cage in the back?!

We’d sing songs, play Eye-spy, gossip and giggle, or if I was feeling more serious, I’d read. There were the obligatory shouts of “Are we there yet?” but we knew we were being annoying. Mum would have packed a handy bag full of snacks and drinks too, motorway snacks were far too expensive!

Pops was a trooper and still is. We would make the trips to and from London in one day, and on occasion, if we had been invited to more than one function, there would be multiple trips there and back in a single weekend.

He sure loves driving too. When I was at studying at Kingston University, and my brother in Bournemouth, he would make triangle trips from Birmingham to Kingston, to Bournemouth, then back to Birmingham, in one day. No mean feat!

And when I was married and had my children, he didn’t want me to drive all the way to Birmingham from Kent – three hours – alone with a baby so he would make the six-hour round trip, starting at 6 am, so he’d be with me by 9 am, then after a quick refresh at my in-laws house, where I then lived, he’d pack up our stuff for a week-long trip back home, and drive back. We’d be with my mum in time for lunch.

He’d still do it now if he could, but his age and sight mean that I wouldn’t let him risk such long journeys in a day.

I know there are pictures of us, piled into the boot of the car somewhere, but they are back in Brum somewhere, in a box of old photos… One day I may find them!

Nowadays, the car is piled with stuff for our maximum capacity of five people car, with four travelling in it. The kids each have some device to keep them occupied. Lil Princess quite likes a notebook to sketch in. We still have the drinks and snacks – a must!

There aren’t many calls for certain songs as they have their playlists on their phones. But when there are, the song is there at our fingertips with these streaming apps and educated cars that play music straight from your phones. They tell us how long we’ll be, using Google Maps to chart the journey. And forget being sandwiched between five other people in the back, like we used to travel… If they even touch fingertips, they scream blue murder!

Our journeys used to be such fun. Kids nowadays don’t have a clue!

And I’ve not even touched upon the days in Kenya, speeding through the Rift Valley, still squished, sticking to the leather seats in the heat, stopping for breaks at breathtaking spots, and arriving, hot and sticky, at our destination, or when we got to stand at the back of the pick up trucks, holding on for our dear lives as the vehicle dodged the potholes, screaming with joy at the exhilarating vibes of the journey.

Those were the days…

Thanks, Lorna for helping me to reminisce!



18 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. justmuddlingthroughlife
    Nov 04, 2018 @ 21:44:14

    I can remember three of us as kids all looking out of the back window waving to the lorry drivers behind. Then laughing when they waved back. the times we would climb over the back seat or squash 4 in the back. Roads are so different now or we are just more aware of the dangers. My 5 year old is in an extended rear facing car seat.. the roads are so busy,,

    Liked by 1 person


  2. Debbie Harris
    Oct 28, 2018 @ 09:25:43

    A great response tot he prompt Ritu, you’re right kids these days have no idea of our road trips!

    Liked by 1 person


  3. OIKOS™-Publishing
    Oct 27, 2018 @ 19:10:37

    Eight people inside ONE Mini Cooper? You are crazy. lol And mom acting as DJ. 😉

    Liked by 1 person


  4. CarolCooks2
    Oct 27, 2018 @ 03:35:21

    You beat me again to first up, Ritu you are sure hot if the starting blocks…Great post I love a road trip especially here as we often can’t read the sign so just go and see where we end up 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


  5. pranabaxom
    Oct 27, 2018 @ 01:16:17

    Can relate to some of those road trip.

    Liked by 1 person


  6. Tony Burgess
    Oct 27, 2018 @ 00:57:57

    That looks refreshing.

    Liked by 1 person


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