One of the only “girls only” road trips I took was when I was 21. I lived in a Canadian city, Winnipeg, and our closest border “town” was Grand Forks. Not very big, not terribly glamorous, but it was the US of A baby. Something you might not know about Canada, we have lower drinking ages than the States. But when everyone turned 21, it was kind of coming of age thing to pile people into the car, cross the border and shop and party in the States.
Something else I should mention. I was 21 a long time ago. I was on my own and I was BROKE. Things were different. The US had way more interesting restaurants and shops than Canada back then. Target was a big hairy deal for us Canadians. Even tiny places like Grand Forks seemed kind of fabulous. We have pretty much the same stores on both sides of the border now. For the most part. But back then, it seemed so different than us.
The other thing the US had. Cheap booze. Cheap cigarettes. And this was in the day when people smoked everywhere. In shopping malls, in the office, in restaurants and the bars. And yes. Back then, I was a smoker. So it was a big thrill to head across the border and pick up cartons of “cheap smokes.”
I shudder to remember. Anyhow. There we were. 21 year olds. It was the late 80’s. We had neon clothes. Big hair. Achy Breaky Heart was our theme song. Four of us. Windows open, feet outside. Music blasting. Blowing smoke rings. Eating sunflower seeds and diet coke.
We thought we were hot stuff. And we did the kind of crazy things, only the young can get away with. We crashed a couple of Frat House parties. We drank too much, flirted too much, stayed out too late and ate greasy hang over food for breakfast. Decadence personified.
The good old days.