My father used to tell us that family road trips were rite of passage, that they allowed you to spend quality time together, hone your negotiation skills in backseat battles and taught you how to pack light.
My sister and I could well offer a different view of proceedings but every December, even after moving away to university, we still found ourselves strapped into the back seat making that trip from South Africa's east to west coast, taking in the incomparable Garden Route.
While my father's memories of those times centre around friendly villages, picturesque countryside, amazing wine and well, happy families, for us kids, it was countless hours of spotting cows and sheep, playing mindless travel games and wolfing down petrol station Icy Poles outside the car because we couldn't be trusted to not drop any on the seats.
Now, my husband, who wrote the manual on the glass half-full, just plain loves a road trip. He, too, has memories of childhood road trip 'adventures', mostly in the Northern Territory. I suppose adventure could be one word for shining a torch on a dark riverbed to find rows and rows of glowing crocodile eyes staring back at you... but hey, each to their own.
Wouldn't it be great, he said, if we took the kids to the snow during the school holidays? Sure, I replied, it would make a nice change from our usual Sunshine Coast beach lifestyle. Mind you, I was thinking hop on a plane to Canberra, hire a car, drive the three hours to Perisher and hit the slopes. Seemed simple enough. Hmmm.
Before I knew it, road trip plans were drawn up, two other families were lured into the trap and I was packing the ski helmets into the car.