Monday, October 12, 2009
Since I was homeschooled (yes, it's true. I'm smarter than you, and I do have social skills), every family vacation was stripped of the opportunity to sit in my underwear and do nothing in a place other than my house (don't worry, I made up for that when I moved away to college for 5 years). Rather, these supposed "vacations" were about packing as much educational curriculum into the family van and visiting sites of historical or religious significance. With the sheer amount of people crammed into the van, hotels became cost prohibitive, which offered the chance to get in touch with nature at various campgrounds (I'm actually really happy my family didn't stay in hotels on vacation. I know way too many people that have no idea how to live outside their comfortable concrete boxes. Thanks for the sweet camping skills, Dad). At least I got my own tent most of the time because my sissy brother Sam was scared of bears & their sense of smell.
Despite the educational nature of the annual family vacations, most of them were actually quite enjoyable. However, every so often on one of these escapades the chosen site pretty much bombed in the face of history books and old wives tales who praised the happenings at these sights for ther historical significance. One such site turned out to be an Indian burial mound in Southwest Ohio, which happened to be in the shape of a snake. Otherwise known as Serpent Mound. This was (and probably still is) one of the most boring things I have ever seen. Reading through history books and encyclopedias, the mound appears to be Ohio's mini version of Stonehenge or the Great Pyramids, but in reality, it's a squiggly mound of dirt covered in grass. Whoop de freakin' do. I wish I still had pictures of the 6-foot deep hole I dug in my parents' backyard that one time. THAT was impressive...
Now, I understand that there is probably some sort of astrological significance to the snake-in-the-grass, and probably some religious significance to those who decided to undertake such a hunge endeavor as piling dirt on top of itself in a symbolic gesture of who-knows-what, but simply put, it's boring. I don't mean to offend anyone by saying that (I apologize to my throng of Native American readers), but I don't see why there's such a hullabaloo over a snake-shaped mound of dirt. The added on-site museum was at best, slightly over the top.
Anyway, back to my original point - To a man, every member of my family left this site bored and uninterested, and despite the usual child/parent dissension over historical sites, a complete family unity was formed the day we went there, and for once, educators & students both agreed: That was boring as hell.