May 4, 2015

So Much To Do, Version 2.15

My youngest one, Jenelle, is going on her middle school's annual 8th grade field trip to Washington D.C. While back in my day, it was to Williamsburg and it lasted about a week, this time they're cramming a boatload of stuff in two and a half days.

Think I'm kidding? Here is her itinerary for a trip that starts this coming Wednesday and finishes up on Friday. That's right, Friday.

additional snide commentary by moi.


6:30a, bleary-eyed and brain dead, they leave Newington MKMS (that's the name of their school, Martin Kellogg Middle School).
9a, Bathroom break (like 100+ 8th graders are gonna be able to hold it for 2 1/2 hours).
11:30a. Lunch break (Burger King at the Clara Barton rest stop. Super nutritious, eh?).
3p. Arrive in Washington D.C. (hopefully they gave them homework to do on the way down).
3:30-4p. Jefferson Memorial or the Archives (gee, a whole HALF HOUR!).
4:30p. Dinner at the Reagan Center (OMG, corrupting innocent minds by introducing them to one of the greatest Republican presidents since Lincoln).
5:30p. Arlington National Cemetery (Good God, a tour stop that actually makes sense. What were they thinking?).
7p. Jefferson Memorial/night tough of D.C, and the White House (great, maybe they'll see the protesters in front. Oh wait, Obama is in, GWB is out.).
8:30p. Check in at the hotel Western Arlington Gateway.

To be honest with everyone, when I went back in 1979, I don't think we did even one-tenth of the stuff listed on the first day. But we did have homework all the way down to Williamsburg.


6:15a. Wake up (really? they're gonna get 100+ 8th graders to wake up at the same time as their parents? I can't even get mine out of bed, dressed and out the door before 7:30a, which is 4 minutes before the school bus arrives).
7a. Breakfast (normally the most important meal of the day, but mine hasn't eaten breakfast in the morning since she was in single digits for an age. good luck with that).
8:15a. Lincoln, Korean, Vietnam, FDR, MLK memorials (no links this time, because if you don't know what these places are, then please, go back to your cubbyhole and keep on believing that God made the world in 7 days and Moses lived to the ripe old age of 1000).
11:30a. Lunch/then the major branches at the Smithsonian: Natural History, American History and Air & Space (on a roll here 'cause here is two consecutive stops that meet with my approval for time length).
4:30p. Back to the hotel for dinner and playing dress up (not like they do during photo day, but like you and I do when we have to do a job interview or have an important meeting with a client) in order to see a play (good luck with that).
5:30p. Dinner at Reagan Center (see comment from day one).
7:30p. Play at Ford's Theatre "Abraham Lincoln: Freedom Song" (when to Ford's Theatre and saw the museum downstairs then went upstairs for the play).
10p. Return (really? what, you're not gonna show them the real D.C. nightlife?)

What? Looking for another fascinating tidbit from 1979? Sorry my friends, I's fresh out.


7:30a. Breakfass (really? so we're skipping the part about waking up, and instead, you're gonna carry these precious looking sleepyheads down to the dining room?).
8:30a. Checking out (c'mon, 'fess up. you know deep down as a parent, you really wanted this to be Hotel California).
9a. WWII Memorial and Holocaust Museum (no, no snide comments. i got some standards ya know).
12:30p. Iwo Jima Memorial (i still got those standards).
1p. Head for home, bag lunch at Iwo Jima (i thought about it with this one, but after re-reading the previous stop, i decided against it).
5p. Dinner at Joyce Kilmer (new jersey again? really? couldn't you wait until you got into new york or connecticut for grub?)
8:30p. Arrive home (really? think about this for a second: you're unloading 3 buses and having dinner. by the tine you get everyone fed and back on the bus, it's probably about 7is. so what you're telling the parents is that the bus drivers are gonna speed from new jersey to conneticut in one hour????).

So, three fun-filled action packed days doing the American History thing and about the only thing they may remember, maybe, is the Holocaust Museum. Beyond that, this sounds like one my typical road trip vacation of yesteryear, in which I drove vast quantities of mileage in order to see absolutely nothing (well almost nothing).

On the plus side, no daughter for three days. On the minus side, no daughter for three days.

And so, this is the memory that they'll have from 8th grade: no more family vacations, 'cause this field trip will prove beyond a shadow of a doubt, that being with 100+ other people that you really don't know or care about, is about as much fun as spending the day with no t.v. smartphone or the Internet.

(c) 2015 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved.


  1. Wow. What a field trip. I think in the 8th grade our "annual field trip" was to the post office. This, kids, is how mail is sorted! WOW!

    1. I know, right? The ultimate road trip for 8th graders.

  2. Egads. ,man. That sounds like agony.

    1. It just might be at that. Especially after daughter hurt/broke(?) finger in gym class today.

  3. Almost makes you want to go with them and see how they accomplish all that.

    1. I'm telling you, if they (meaning the teachers) can do what mine did with us, I will be seriously impressed with them. Having said that, I'm glad I'm not them.

  4. I hope she has fun! On my first glance at the itinerary, I misread "Reagan Centre" as "Pagan Centre." I thought "Wow, that's broadminded of them!"

    1. I think that would be a vast improvement over Reagan Centre. I'm hoping so too. :D

  5. Wow, that's some trip, I'm feel knackered just reading it! :D

    1. Reminds me of some of my vacations: cram too much stuff into too little time and really don't see much of anything.

  6. Will she have time to eat? Good God!

    1. One can only hope. She's already thin as a rail, so this will be a real adventure.

  7. Sounds like a fun trip, but I would not want to chaperone that!

    1. Gotta agree with you there. A chaperon I would not make very good.

  8. That sounds exhausting! I got to go on a field trip to Ottawa, the capital city of Canada, in 6th grade, but I don't recall there being an agenda quite that packed.

    1. My version of that trip wasn't that action packed either. The highlight of mine was Williamsburg and I believe we were gone for a week.


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