Fourth of July Snapshots

We ended our Fourth of July vacation as we began it: driving in the car. We were half-way between Little Rock and Memphis, an area slightly less populated than the middle of Wyoming. As we sailed past the only rest stop in miles and miles, Liza sang out, “I’m stinky!”

Misty confirmed that, yes, her diaper needed changing. “Look at my poop hands!” Liza said, displaying her mighty poop hands while I looked for the next exit. About three years later I found one and pulled off the interstate. The only place to change her was on a gravel road leading to a field.

We plopped her on the side of the road and performed our best Bo-and-Luke-Duke fast-change routine. We were partway through when I looked up at a tractor that was patiently waiting to drive into the field. We finished up and got in the car. “That’s a John Deere tractor!” Eli said as we drove away.

That wasn’t the most surreal vacation moment. The most surreal moment came during lunch on Saturday. We were following the American tradition of having sushi for the Fourth of July. Liza was tearing through a cucumber roll while Eli picked daintily at his peanut butter and jelly sandwich. The restaurant’s TVs were showing ESPN, which was carrying the Nathan’s hot dog eating contest.

Have you ever watched this thing? It’s like a train wreck involving pallets of Wonder Bread and the wienermobile. At one point I stared at contestant Joey Chesnut, whose mouth was encrusted with bits of hot dog bun as if starring in a porn movie sponsored by the Food Network, and wasn’t sure I could finish my meal.

So in conclusion: USA! USA! USA!

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