Saturday, February 13, 2010

Here we are on the Purple Heart Highway headed toward Baltimore. Holy nightmare! Was that my ex mother in law in that white car?? She looks young. Just a memory floating by, a mean woman. The Tee is driving as I totally tweaked my back yesterday shoveling the three feet of white off the car with the aid of the absolutely gorgeous oriental guy from a few doors down the row on Norwood. His two adorable little girls watching as he dug in, superhero style, with his MASTER shovel and pitched volumes of snow away from my car onto the sidewalk, rescuing me from being buried alive. Unfortunately his shovel was metal and the roof of my car is now covered with giant scratches running in all directions... oops.

We have Joni For the Roses singing away and the sun is shining and life is good. I can’t see the computer screen cause its’ so sunny. Call me at the station, the lines are open!!

We’re thinking some historical sights in Virginia would suit as we are both such history freaks. Will get past DC on the infamous Beltway that separates those crazy craven, politicians from the regular people. We are in mothership territory again, home depot, ikea, after some pretty country along the Susquehanna. God I love that river. Prettiest river on the east coast imho.

Headed into the Baltimore tunnel now. Drowning.. drowning. Was that a leak? Hey there’s a Volvo wagon from Princeton NJ!! Man, it’s nice out, still plenty of snow though.

Later.. We have Chopin on the box. Everybody pull over and ronde de jambe!!

Holy mother of God. We are at the junction of 495 and 95 south just south of DC and you have never seen so many cars and trucks trying to move in the same direction and merge together without giving an inch. It’s worse than rush hour Lincoln tunnel. Tee cannot believe there isn’t some major malfunction happening here as there are a million overpasses winding around and over each other like a basket of writhing snakes and still there isn’t enough blacktop capacity to keep things moving smoothly. Five lanes. Six wide. Still not enough. And of course all that snow melting and spraying all over each other. Mud flaps notwithstanding.

A little better now. But get me outta here! How do folks DO this every day? No wonder Americans are angry. Then again, and perhaps what's worse, I know that for many folks this time alone in their car at the beginning and end of the day stuck in traffic and doing whatever they do, is the best time for day for them. Especially for women. What does that tell us?

We are haded for traders joes in Springfield to stock up on supplies for the cooler. Maybe find a bowl of soup somewhere. Seven lanes. Eight. Clogging the great aorta of America, exudation from the heart of the nation’s capitol. Sludge of traffic. Just like bill clinton’s heart. They say he’s in perfect health now that he’s had a quad bypass and and removed a blockage from his artery yesterday. "Perfect health" now they say, a relative term it seems. In this great country of ours….The nation in denial.

It’s only 2;15 pm and the traffic is stuck in the mud.

There are, by the way, NO signs anywhere to indicate where the hell we are as we creep along. We seemed to have missed Springfield, a bummer as that’s the last Trader Joe’s til, North Carolina. At the moment we hate Virginia, a state in which I spent a good portion of my adolescence and one I used to love. I hold all Virginians personally accountable for the lack of signage.

At 4;49 we are still in traffic. Only now we’re on route 1, known hereabouts as the Jefferson Davis Hwy south outside of Fredericksburg, VA. And it’s rush hour on a Friday, holiday weekend (we neglected to take that into our thought process when planning the trip). How could we be so dumb? We still cannot figure out where the hell all these folks seem to be going. All headed south. I asked a guy in a nearby truck and he said “well, maybe they’ve just been cooped up all week and are headed out of the cities.”

Well, I guess. Seems strange to me. Why not just go home? He had a Virginia accent, so I guess he knew what he was talking about. Nice to hear.

Mary Washington U is a very nice campus, lots of VA brick and white pillars. T sez welcome to the land of anti choice license plates. Snails pace.

Over there’s Karen Radley’s Saturn dealership. She’s a relative of Boo’s I guess. Entering Spottsylvania county, and there’s a local cop. I wonder if he has trouble being taken seriously with an employer named Spotsylvania, home to Rocky and Bullwinkle, Boris and Nastasha? Virginians are quite vain, as we are seeing more than the average number of vanity plates. All the AM stations are in Spanish. Who knew?

We manage to refind Int 95 south and get on it. It’s getting dark and we are headed for what seems to be the only actual restaurant north of Richmond where we might get a decent bite to eat, some bistro or other that claims to be in Glen Allen, Va. Which is also home to a Whole Foods (or Whole Paycheck, as Tee’s pals call it) where we think we might stock up on road food as we’ve missed the Trader Joe’s.

Glen Allen is an awful place at night. At this point we are GPSing every turn trying to locate cafes that don’t exist or are actually in Richmond. We’d hoped to avoid driving in Richmond at night. Frustrated after many twists, switchbacks, and phoquitalls, we are headed south on 95 again, starving, it’s 730 pm and we pull off the hwy in Chester, Va to the comfort of the Comfort Inn (very nice folks and great service, nice rooms for the money as well) and pretty good Mexican food as Don Jose’s right next to the Inn. Believe it or not, a good meal with Coronas and very good flan (from the crème caramel snob) for twenty bucks. Can’t beat that. That bed looked mighty good. Fell into it full and happy by 9 pm.

More snow predicted.