Discovering the world together can provide parents and children with memories to cherish, strengthening the bonds of love and respect—or not. Here, Hemispheres contributors share tales of family trips that didn’t quite follow the script, along with tips to help others avoid familial woes in far-off lands.
Early in our courtship, my better half and I spent a few days in New York City. One morning I convinced her to go to my favorite bagel joint, which I’d failed to mention was a 45-minute trip from the hotel. With each subway station, I could sense her hunger turning to anger, the bypassed breakfast sandwiches mounting like counts of treason.
Even now, my beloved hasn’t fully forgiven me. If a “Jeopardy!” answer was “Reasons that Tony doesn’t plan trips anymore,” the question would be “What is dragging me 80 blocks in the rain for a bagel?”
Years later, we went back to New York with our son, and he wanted to try these amazing bagels his mother was always talking about. She was happy with the arrangement, as long as she didn’t have to come. So Mom ordered room service while we boys went off to find bagels. The kid still talks about them, about how they’re the best bagels he’s ever had. Because they are. —TONY WARE