Saturday, June 27, 2009

On the Road (Again)

Saturdays are never a good day to travel, especially if you're trying to use anything close to the I-95 corridor in the mid-Atlantic states, and, if your route involves a tunnel? Forget about it. Last Saturday it took us 5 1/2 hours to make a trip to the beach that used to take a little under 4 when we lived there. Today was even worse.

My brother, who was about a half an hour ahead of us sitting in stop and go traffic, told me that my nearly 17-year-old nephew asked him when we were going to get hover cars. "Haven't they been promising them your whole life?" he asked, and my brother had to admit it was true-- starting with the Jetsons on forward, flying cars have definitely been one of the glaring unkept pledges of those white-coated technocrats with their horn-rimmed glasses who starred in all the science movies we saw in school. Beyond that wild dream though, my brother also observed that this was evidence that the infrastructure we have now can't really support the population who uses it regularly.

Back in our aging station wagon, the threat of overheating encouraged us to try various alternate routes. On those less-traveled roads, my eye landed on the likes of Two Frogs on a Bike Antiques, plenty of Queen Anne's Lace and escaped orange day lilies decorating the side of the road, three or four of those long and low old-fashioned motels whose single doors lead to tidy little cubes of rooms, so organized and space-efficient (how are they still open so far from the interstate?), and a hundred mimosa trees in full bloom-- their flowers always remind me of my grandmother's pink slippers.

By far, our two biggest mistakes today were the times we decided to get back on the interstate in the hopes that it was clearer, and we made those choices because we were so focused on our destination-- home-- but the journey was spoiled, and we didn't get there any quicker.

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