Blow your biscuits. Chew backwards. Insult your shoes. Fertilize the sidewalk. Whatever you want to name it, I’ve never been a big fan of tossing my cookies…which is why I was never a big fan of traveling when I was younger. Within two minutes of sitting on a plane with my tray table in its upright position, I was usually keeling over making close friends with the lovely little bag they shove in those seat pockets in front of you. Yes, I’m sure I was a joy to travel with as a child.
Don’t get me wrong. I was pleasant. I was polite. I was smiling. I was “the good one.” That did not, however, protect me from the rumbling that would most assuredly attack at some point on any adventure involving moving vehicles traveling anywhere past my school…or beyond the local pet store. (*side note: I was always a sucker for animals I couldn’t possibly bring home.)
I’ve blown my groceries:
In the backseat.
In the middle seat (on a plane).
On a male flight attendant’s shoe. (I’ve sent happy thoughts up to The Big Guy Upstairs for this guy).
On my pancakes (that was attributed to altitude sickness).
In a blue bucket, on a boat, during a bachelorette party (I love you, Beck!).
In a teeny, tiny bathroom in a super huge airplane.
In brown paper bags.
In glossy white paper bags.
In large shopping bags filled with presents from our trip:
Me: “Mom, I feel sick.”
Mom (absentmindedly): “Here honey, use this.” (“this” being the shopping bag filled with presents from our trip).
Me: Well, I’m sure you can figure out the rest.
*Side note: My mother always took me seriously after this particular event.
Question: How do you know Lauren Grant is an honest person? Answer: She will tell you up front that it’s not looking good…and then sadly follow through…and then write about it later.
I think, because of my overactive ability to liberate my lunch as a child, I made it all the way through college without getting sick for any reason other than the flu. (I’ve since made up for that. Twice. One time on a date of sorts. Smooth, LG. Real smooth. Question: He pulls over to the side of the road multiple times, waits for you to decorate the parking lot, and the grass, and an ant pile, and then actually lets you back into the car? Answer: Yeah, he’s probably a keeper.)
So, as a child who was not a fan of painting the town green, I developed a survival kit of sorts for any trip involving time in the air. This kit included:
A potpourri sachet (to shove in my face when the exhaust fumes started to permeate into the cabin).
A hoodie to rest my head against the plane window.
A diet entirely made up of Saltine crackers starting a day before the trip.
Drugs. Lots and lots of drugs. The ones that make you sleep.
This survival kit was so successful that instead of me actually tossing the tiger, my family just drew pictures of me tossing the tiger as I slept peacefully on the plane. All the way from takeoff to touchdown. I would wake up to find napkins with stick figures of me (distinguishable by my long hair and pen streaks like a rainbow coming out of a hole in my head) placed neatly on my lap. Love. That’s what I call love.
As an adult, I have yet to ride the meal-go-round on a trip. **Knocks on wood. Hard.** And so, I love to travel. All the time. Stick me on a plane or a boat or in a car, and I’m ready to go. I write this as I plan a trip across the country (Texas) and a trip across the world (Spain). I’m leaving the potpourri at home, but the sweet sleep drugs? Those are still coming with me.
So while losing your lunch is never really fun, it can lead to respect from your mother, a new appreciation for modern medicine, and signs of affection scribbled on paper napkins. Just like John Wooden said, “It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.” So, cheers to tossing your cookies and caution to the wind. World, here I come. I’m ready. Suitcase, sunglasses, sweet sleep drugs, and all.
**Photos courtesy of sodahead.com, alldayplay.fm, columbia.edu, and 123rf.com.