Toward the end of summer, I wanted to go somewhere so badly. It had been such a busy summer that I really wanted and needed to get away.
I do love Bryce Canyon. I have been there many times and spent a lot of summer trips there as a kid. I began checking for places to stay down there and found a little motel in Tropic, Utah that was cheap and within 7 miles of the National Monument.
On Thursday evening, the day before my son’s 15th birthday we set off on our adventure. He was actually very excited about this trip and at the prospect of hiking around and taking a lot of pictures. We had been going hiking on weekends throughout the summer and were surprised to find that he really enjoyed hiking and climbing. Who knew?
The drive to Tropic was unbelievable. The radio in my truck was having issues. It would just randomly stop working and the only way to get it to play again was to "Fonzie" the dashboard by hitting it just right. That was going to be my son’s job while we were driving. But, the first time that it stopped working, he said he wasn’t going to turn it back on.
But, then when it was time to go to sleep, he wouldn’t. He wanted to talk. He wouldn’t stop trying to get me to talk no matter how hard I tried to convince him that I was exhausted. So, I gave up and we talked until at least 2:00 in the morning. It was a really good talk, though.
We talked about him staying clean and sober. We talked about how he could sell his photography, then, set aside some of the profits to start a foundation that would help other kids stay off drugs and help kids who have become clean to stay clean. He thought he would help others learn how seeing the world through photography was a lot better than seeing the world high on drugs. We talked about him going to the DARE officer at the elementary school and asking him if he could talk to the kids in the DARE program about what he has gone through and what he has learned to try to help them understand what they are really being taught in DARE.
We talked about how he would like to travel around the world taking photos and how he would like me to go with him on all of these trips since we were having such a good time on this one. We talked about him setting up a website to sell his photography and to promote his foundation. We brainstormed about ways he could make money from his photography for his foundation. It was so wonderful to make positive plans for the future with him. It was inspiring to hear him talk about wanting to help other kids. It made me feel so good to know that he wanted to stay clean and sober. I was glad that we had come on this trip and felt that the long drive, money spent, sore muscles, and exhaustion, were all worth it.
We got back in the truck. He went to sleep. I drove in silence in the pouring rain.
But, it was good while it lasted.
I wish it could have lasted longer.
I really wish that.