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And You Thought Your Family Vacation Was a Doozy …

Shea-cations ... something always happens

Family vacations are a rite of passage for any kid. Unfortunately I learned this lesson all too well during my childhood. You see, my family is, well, I guess we should say, cursed.

Yeah, I really mean it.

My parents saw to it that we kids got a taste of the outdoors and often. We were a part of a dune buggy club that had monthly outings in various places throughout California and sometimes Nevada, Oregon and Arizona. Each time something likely – minor or major – went wrong.

Don’t believe me? I’ll give you a sample:

∙  The 1978 trip to the Oregon Dunes we had a double-dose of Sheadom:

∙  Dad was hospitalized after he lost his hearing from taking too much Tylenol.

∙  But the top of the list is when our motorhome exploded, while driving through the mountains, and yes we were in it. We made the front page of the Medford Mail Tribune.  I lost my Mr. Snuffleupagus stuffed animal in that fire. And to boot, we lost 15 cases (!) of beer we were bringing to my grandpa in Lake Tahoe. Oh the agony! Universe – 15, Sheas – 0

∙ Don’t forget about the time we were coming home from Pismo Beach and the tire blew out on dune buggy trailer smack dab in the middle of the 101 (Pacific Coast Highway) in Santa Barbara. If any of you have blown a tire in southern California, it’s not easy to change a tire while keeping your wits about you. Dad did it magnificently!

∙ Then there was the six-week, cross-country trip in ’76. The Griswolds have nothing on our trip to Disney World. My grandparents joined us for this trip that included grandma hiding under the motorhome table because of the electrical storm we ran into in Kansas or my second-degree sunburned shoulders. That was also the time I got lost in the American History Museum in Washington, DC.

∙ Did I mention our house was robbed three times while we were away on these excursions?

Growing up a Shea was interesting to say the least. But I wouldn’t exchange it for anything in the world. My parents wanted us to have great family memories to share with our kids, if ever that time came.

Mom, dad, you succeeded and then some! This all prepared us for the plane crashing into the house, right? But that’s a different story 🙂

What are your family vacation memories? We’ve got a group in our online community talking about it. Come on, give us your story!