Monday, November 28, 2011

The Journal Continues

Some humor from North Carolina:

More of Dick's Journal

Day 3

We started the day as we always do on the road, with a check of the motel's breakfast buffet. Finding the decaf decanter empty, I set off in search of the attendant while Nancy looked over the goodies. The room was filled with men in work clothes on the same mission. She asked one of the fellows where the plates and bowls were. No success. They did not speak English! (In the parking lot were seven trucks from the Asplundh tree trimmer company - these were the workers.) Determined that she could use sign language and mime as well as her son, she soon was pointed in the right direction.

Yesterday toward the end of the drive, we got out of the rain but overnight it caught up with us. It was a very light mist and the traffic was light so it wasn't a problem.

Nancy is becoming more adept with her phone. I'd make an observation or suggest a question as in "I wonder why - - " Out comes the phone and pretty soon an answer or comment. Two observations; 1) While the barns in Michigan are mostly red, from the middle of Ohio on, they are mainly white. We decided that in the southern climes, white barns would be cooler. I knew why our barns are red, red paint was cheaper. 2) While northern Ohio is cornfield - cornfield - cornfield - mosque, where the white barns start and proceeding south, the exits are church - adult entertainment or lingerie - church.

In Virginia we had our first experience with fog in the mountains. Visibility was severely limited. So what is the better option? Drive in the right lane and chance running up on extremely slow traffic or the left lane and chance being rear ended? We opted for the left with the plan to pull over if headlights were approaching from the rear. One note, it does not rain in the fog. We came down out of the mountains and entered North Carolina. The rain ended, the sun came out and the temp hit 75. We actually turned on the air. Tomorrow I wear shorts.

Now being an old goat, my philosophy has become to roll in the right lane a mile or two over, just keeping up with traffic. It worked for me earlier, in Ohio we went a couple of hours and only passed 2 or 3 vehicles. It wasn't working today, the limit was 65 and at 67 I couldn't keep anyone in sight. Not enjoying having the trucks breathing down our necks, we cranked it up to 72 and still had a few blow our doors off.

Nuvi started talking to us. "Severe traffic - recalculating" and then told us to keep doing what we were doing. We didn't see any severe traffic but we finally figured that she was looking for an alternative route. If she had suggested one we sure wouldn't have taken it. Talk about "Death by GPS"! After about an hour of this, we found the back up. About 15 to 20 miles of slow creep. There were periodic cop cars with flashers going in the median but not appearing to be accomplishing anything. Towards the end, we saw a cop talking to a young woman on the side whose car had been in a fender bender but I think that was the result, not the cause of the back up.

Anyway, the traffic cleared, the rain kept falling and we stopped on the outskirts of Charlotte, SC for lunch at Bubba's Barbecue. As usual I ate too much but it was sure good. There were some funny signs in the parking lot like "Don't read this under penalty of the law". I said "I'll bet there's a cache here." Out came the phone and the cache was found.

After lunch, back on the road and the traffic was even heavier. We were making the turn on the x-way in Columbia, 8 miles from the motel when the sky opened up and there was a deluge, we pulled off at the next exit and waited it out at McDonalds. There was a river flowing through the parking lot. It let up and we came on to our home for the night.

At the exit, there was a traffic light, we had to make a left. We waited more than 5 minutes and the light did not change for us. Finally, the car in front of us ran it. The semi behind pulled partially along side and shouted something indiscernible at Nancy. Well, I'm not going to get run over, to Hell with it! I ran the red light.

St Augustine tomorrow.