You can tell me something and I may forget. Teach me something and I may remember. But if you involve me, I will learn. Often I learn from my daughter more than she does from me. Recently, a forecast for rain threatened our road trip to St. Louis. My practical parenting was overshadowing an adventurous spirit to have a journey – but not Coley. She embraced the rain and reminded me how some people love to play in the rain while others just get wet.
Raindrops are never what bring the clouds and after a few hours of our trip, we hadn't even had time to notice that it had stopped raining. We were too caught up in another one of our adventures. Driving across Missouri for a trip was easy and something we'd never done before. Being an artist, Coley loved the Arch – its design and its grandeur. We'd explore it often in between our excursions to the City Museum, the Zoo and sampling toasted ravioli. A traditional Italian dinner on "The Hill" was the perfect way to end our day.
The storms came and went throughout the weekend, but our enthusiasm for exploring St. Louis remained constant. Often we travel to escape, and there's nothing we can do about the weather. We shouldn't cry about the rain because sometimes, it washes away what we were escaping in the first place.
The Top 5 Things Ted Learned About Travel On This Trip:
1. The Gateway Arch is 630 feet high and 630 feet wide at its base. It's made of stainless steel, and no, I don't know how they clean it, Coley – so stop asking.
2. Eating IMO's Pizza while watching an in-room movie on a rainy night with a view of the Arch is flipping awesome.
3. The St. Louis Zoo is set in the rolling hills of Forest Park and it's FREE! I'm talking 18,000 animals. You could go every day for a year and look at 50 new ones.
4. Driving to St. Louis in the rain can add an extra hour to your drive. If your kid sleeps the entire way, they're not being a good copilot so you can eat their Fritos!
5. If the hotel you stayed at as a kid 35 years ago hasn't changed at all, that's not necessarily a good thing. "Hi, yes housekeeping? Could you come up and put a shower curtain on our shower? And get rid of the Capri Suns under the bed, too."
The optimism of a child can remind us that we shouldn't always wait for a storm to pass because if we did, we'd never be able to dance in the rain. From now on Coley and I will always look at a travel forecast differently knowing that without the rain there would never be a rainbow.
"The forecast is for rain the entire weekend. Why don't we not go to St. Louis and just hang out here and go see a movie or something?" - Me to Coley
"-----" - No words just a NOT IMPRESSED, McKayla Maroney-style stare from Coley for 20 seconds.
"Um, ok, pack an umbrella and a coat. I'll go fill up the car." - Me
Additional photos from this journey can be found here: FlickrTravelWithTed