When Craig and I were young, both of our families would travel the same highway to visit relatives in Utah. I remember these road trips well with my family. I was usually in the back of the station wagon, squished and uncomfortable. The two lane highway always scared me, especially when it came to passing a slow car or a big semi. My Dad would keep us busy by telling us to find a place to stop for ice cream. That was our job and I took it seriously. My sister and I would keep an eye out for any roadside stop with a spinning ice cream cone sign in front of it. My Dad would always stop, sometimes multiple times per trip. I remember being anxious to get out, stretch my legs and enjoy an ice cream cone. It was always soft serve and Foster’s Freeze was the favorite.
A couple of weeks ago Craig and I went on a road trip. We traveled up that same two lane highway. It was fun to reminisce about family trips and some old sights. Then we past an old house. A really, really old house. It dawned on me that this house must have been there all those years ago and that my family and I had driven by it countless times. I realized I had, more than likely, seen it as I was looking out the window looking for a place to stop for ice cream.
It was a big house and I could imagine a large family with lots of kids living there. They would have had holidays and family gatherings in the big weed filled yard. Maybe the parents grew old together there. I imagined the generations of this family moving out, saying goodbye, growing old, passing on. It had a history and even though all I did was drive by it in a station wagon I was part of it.