An Antidote to Car Rides


Hannah Sherffius writes, Summer vacations usually mean long car drives…

Summer vacations usually mean long car drives, long car drives usually mean screaming children, and screaming children usually mean annoyed parents. Most people think that there is no way to keep both kids and adults content and happy on a long car ride. However, there is one antidote to long car rides, and that is listening to books on tape. Books on tape are a great way to unite family members. If you pick outstories the whole family will like, it will result in a much easier car ride. In fact, in my experience, my siblings and I can’t wait to get back in the car to hear the rest of the adventure. My family and I have gone on many car trips, such as the time we drove to South Dakota. Before we go on a car trip, we always browse the library for books on tape to bring. Once, we came across a series called, “Hank the Cowdog,” by John Erickson. It tells the story of a dog named Hank and his adventures on the ranch. The narrator, who is the author, uses funny voices for each individual character and sings amusing songs. Books like these are ones the whole family can enjoy. When we first started listening to “Hank the Cowdog,” we were in stitches in just minutes. I would also recommend a hilarious series called “Ivy and Bean.” This series is not only good for kids of all ages, but for adults, too. I find that my family and I have enjoyed books by Avi, and we also were laughing and grinning at the “Clementine” series by Sara Pennypacker. Older kids might like the adventure-packed “Gregor the Overlander” series by Suzanne Collins.One of the best parts about books on tape is that you can get them for free at the library. You can enjoy your favorite books on tape for no cost at all! However, be sure to check that the discs are not cracked before you rent the books. It is important to do this because if the disc is broken, you almost die of suspense because you can’t hear the rest of the story. This happened to my family and me once. We put in the second disc of the book, and we discovered, much to our groans and moans, that it was cracked. We were all sad that we couldn’t hear the rest of the story. This is why it is important to always bring a couple extra books on tape to listen to in the car. Even though the discs may look visibly fine, they might start to freeze up in the middle of the book. By following these instructions, you and your family can have a fun, enjoyable, and memorable car ride. There will be no screaming, no arguing, no crying. Instead, there will be bliss, peacefulness, and happiness. iPods, video games, laptops, and portable DVD’s are not the cure for a long car ride, despite what some people think. Instead, books on tape are the miraculous antidote for long car rides.