When we travel, alone without their father, I opt for a story and save money in the seedy motels with creaking doors opening to my parking spot. If there isn’t cracking wallpaper borders at the lobby, gold varnished plastic light fixtures in the rooms, or character or actual DNA of characters embedded in the walls and bedding, you won’t find me.

We pull up to fits of giggles. This may be the worst one, yet. Roman rolls his gravel bike through the double front doors, angling to the side to kick open the second door and enter the spacious lobby. A box fan whirrs in the corner. Two…