Monday, May 08, 2006

Turnpike from hell

Here in the land of the Red Man (the natives, not the tobacco), we have many much needed, well maintained, and enjoyable to drive 75 m.p.h. toll roads. They are fast, relatively empty, and due to the cost of building toll booths at each entrance/exit, they are virtually void of on/off ramps.

Last week was C's kinder field trip to the OKC Zoo. The 5 classes of kinder kiddies rode the buses. The parents, grandparents and assorted relatives caravaned behind the diesel spewing black and yellow transports.

We left enmasse from the school parking lot. I stopped for gas, figuring I could easily catch up to the rolling kinder road show with ease, even AT the speed limit.

Mistake count, number 1.

Those buses and soccer moms hauled A*S.

In the 20 minutes or so that I stopped for 8 gallons of dino juice a complete window wash and squeegie, pee break for PK, and a Propel water for me, the hellonwheels caravan covered enough ground to disappear from site -- and site here in the flattest state in the union is quite a distance.

No problem. I was informed by the school before we pulled out that the buses would be taking the Turnpike (toll road) to save time. Bonus was that I knew they would eventually end up at the zoo, and I knew how to get there, having been there many times before.

That's 2.

Long story short, I ended up going 20 miles out of my way, due to the fact that the toll road heading to Tulsa that I mistakenly merged onto had no nearby exits. Well okay, it had one.


I arrived at the zoo to find my steaming mad 6-year old, her arms crossed and foot tapping an angry showtune, standing with her concerned looking teacher.

She was the absolutely last and final kinder student from her school to enter the zoo.

I tried to make up for my tardiness by buying her one of those "machine-made-wax-sculptures-pressed-instantly-before-your-eyes-into-the-shape-of-a-gorilla" zoo souvies, almost immediately upon entering the zoo.

That's 3, and he's out.

Wax cracks. Wax breaks. Wax melts. Wax gorillas should be purchased upon exiting the zoo, not entering.

Darn toll roads.

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