Well, I’m back from my big adventure. My youngest sister (YS) was getting married. She moved to Massachusetts about a year ago to be with her fiancé. My middle sister (MS) and I drove down on Saturday for her wedding on Monday. We planned on returning on Tuesday. This is the farthest I have ever driven before and I learned and observed a few interesting things on the trip. Never, never order an extra large decaf coffee from MacDonald’s. First off, the coffee is instant (blecchhh). That would not have been so bad maybe if it was a regular size, but if it’s extra large, the coffee in next to undrinkable.
If you do however, manage to drink it all, do not then have something else to drink to wash away the taste as you are approaching the border. You may get stuck in a 3 hour traffic delay – yes three hours – to move half a mile. With absolutely no chance to turn around. No chance. After drinking an extra large coffee followed up by a diet coke.
Washrooms at Home Depot are located in the back. The back of a very large store.
When men jump out of a car, why do they not go behind the trees? They must like to rub it in about their abilities to jump out of a car in a 3 hour traffic jam. Women can’t do this.
Never trust a GPS that has a male voice. My YS sent us her fiance’s GPS to help us get there. It lied. It will get you to almost where you want to go, then either it will play with your mind and give screwy directions and chuckle to itself as it says in an oh so polite voice to “please make a legal U turn as soon as possible” probably realizing you can’t make a legal U turn for the next mile or so, or it will stop working altogether. Then it does it again. And then again. Just when you have no idea where you are.
Between these two factors, a trip that normally takes between 7 and 10 hours can take 12 hours. Yes, 12 hours. A beer will go down very smooth after this. And you sleep good.
The area around Vermont, New York and Massachusetts is breathtakingly beautiful. There are mountains all the way around and the countryside is much more winding than I am used to driving. But it sure was gorgeous scenery.
Americans actually seem to obey the speed laws. In Canada, if the speed limit is 100 (kilometers) an hour, that pretty much means you won’t get caught if you’re still going 120. I love to drive fast. I couldn’t do that too much on the weekend. Between obeying the speed laws and the winding roads, I had to curtail my need for speed . Luckily I made up for it on the way home once I crossed the border.
I’ve observed this before of course, having grown up in a border town, but our currencies are very different. Canadian currency comes in some very lovely colours, blue for $5, purple for $10, green for $20, orange for $50 etc. We also have coins for $1 (loonies) and $2 (toonies). It’s easy to tell what is what and how much money you have left. With American currency, you have to actually look at the bills to see what each one is. And it can seem like you have more money that you do when you have seven $1 bills.
I must admit to being somewhat disappointed in the Barns & Noble store we went to. I had most of my money earmarked for books I couldn’t find at Chapters, but alas there weren’t any. I did however pick up a book with one of “those” covers I would have hemmed and hawed over purchasing here. I didn’t have to worry about that because chances are I’ll never go back there. I liked that freedom.
And the most important thing. As much fun as traveling is, and as much as you laugh the next day about a 3 hour traffic jam and all that entails is, as much fun as it is meeting some very wonderfully warm and friendly people, as much fun as it is to stay in a hotel and not worry about having to make the bed, as much fun as it is seeing some of the most incredibly beautiful scenery, as nice as it is to see your baby sister marry a very nice man with a very nice family, there really is no place like home.