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Road Tripping Ups and Downs

I am not a very good road-tripper. Twenty minutes in the car, and I fall asleep. If I’m well-rested enough to stay awake, I get bored, so I read or write, which makes me carsick at least half the time. And depending on the time of day, I tend to have to make a lot of bathroom stops.

So I was really dreading the 9-hour drive to Vermont this past weekend. We left mid-afternoon and dropped Number Two at my in-laws. The drive wasn’t the worst we’ve ever taken. It wasn’t the longest, didn’t have the most rain, and had almost no traffic slow-downs (one accident, never came to a complete stop).

But there was still an endless quality to it. Our trip was to Burlington, VT, which is in the far north of the state, on the New York border. We use a combination of Google Maps and Mr. T (the voice of our TomTom GPS). Mr. T wanted to take us the ferry route, but I was pretty sure it wouldn’t be running at midnight, so I said no. Then he wanted to take us the longest of the three Google options, so we opted for the shortest of the Google options. Big mistake. 😦

In the daytime, that would probably have been a beautiful drive through Lake George. At 11:30 p.m., it was completely deserted. No lights, no cars, nothing. I’d been reading Megan Hart’s serial horror, The Resurrected, and that left me with a residual creep factor the lonely roads didn’t help. We were low on gas, and everything for ninety miles was closed.

But it all ended up fine. At 1:30 a.m. we checked into a hotel five miles from the college we were visiting. After three hours of sleep and a complimentary breakfast, we headed out into an extremely gorgeous day. The tours and sessions and lunch the school provided were all very good, and unfortunately, I have a feeling this is the school that will be Number One’s first choice.

Which means making this trip potentially 8 more times. Or more.

Coming home, we took the ferry across Lake Champlain. It was awesome. Beauty and peace and a slightly faster route. We ate dinner at the last Old Dock House on the lake and drove partway home, stopping just north of Albany for the night.

As I write this, Mr. T says we will be home in 4 hours and 37 minutes. It will be more than that, because we’re currently stuck in accident traffic and we have to stop to pick up Number Two. But at least it will be in all daylight, and there’s no rain in the forecast.

Luckily, we have a year before we might have to do it again. I just won’t think about the trip to Philly in a couple of weeks, or the 7-hour day trip to NJ, or the drive up to Massachusetts in August for a family reunion and more college visits. At least I’m not going to Ohio at the end of July. Bonus!

So which of you are road trip enthusiasts, which are homebodies, and which are like me and like to travel but would rather take take the train or fly?

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11 Responses

  1. I love road trips. We’re heading out on a major one in a couple of weeks. We are driving from Northern California to Eastern Nevada and then down South to Northeastern Arizona. I also tend to fall asleep or get carsick reading or writing. But it’s a family tradition. We honeymooned to Yellowstone 19 years ago. Did the drive to Mt. Rushmore a few years ago. My oldest did his first road trip at 90 days old. Our dream is to one day drive Highway 50 from Sacramento (well, about 40 miles east) all the way to Ocean City, MD.

  2. Sorry – I’m the biker chick. Getting there is 3/4 of the fun! Unless you’ve got your feet down (stopped) in a traffic jam coming home from Vegas, 105 degrees, and 20 degrees hotter because of the engine heat and the burning pavement. And you have to pee.

    But other than that, it’s awesome! Well, unless you’re in a flash flood, in Four Corners New Mexico . . . Hey, maybe I just thought of a subject for you next blog! Enjoy, Nat!

    • I think biking is very different, but I don’t know for sure, having never road-tripped on a bike. πŸ™‚

      Having to pee takes the fun out of ANY traveling! LOL

  3. I live in Montana. It’s 55 miles just to get groceries and go to work. We don’t consider it a road trip unless it’s longer than 150 miles. However, traffic usually isn’t an issue. At least not of the human kind.

    • I don’t consider it a road trip unless it’s that long, either. My daily commute used to be more than an hour each way, but only about 30-40 miles. I bet it’s a nicer drive in Montana. πŸ™‚

  4. Hubby has the travel gene. I’m more of a homebody. But I’m a good wife *cough cough* so I travel. Once you’ve road-traveled in a motorhome, you’ll never want to go by car again! I do love having “my house” with me on the road. Kitchen. Bedroom. Bathroom. Living room. Television (with on-the-road satellite). Pull into a rest stop and set up your house.

    I used to like to fly. Now, it’s such a hassle. I have to be at the airport so early…and the airport is over an hour from my house so I have to leave HOURS before my flight. Sometimes I swear I could drive it as fast as flying! Plus I don’t like how full the planes are crammed. My ass doesn’t fit well in those 18 inch seats. Now I admit I like getting off the plane and being where I’m going but getting there is a such a b*tch!

    Traveling by train…Did that in Europe but have never done that in the U.S. I did enjoy the train.

    • Never did an RV trip, and not sure I’d want to. See, part of the problem with driving *anything* is that I’d have to drive sometimes. I get bored, which means I get sleepy, and obviously that’s not safe. LOL

      When I’m not driving I feel guilty, and I feel like I have to entertain the driver.

  5. I love traveling! In fact, we’re headed to Gettysburg tomorrow–850 miles. Taking the motorhome. Like Cyndi, I think it’s the best way to travel. We’ll be gone a couple of weeks. Then at the end of the month, it’s Chicago by train (taking the grandboys) and later in July, RWA in Anaheim. Washington DC in Sept. Back to Florida in Nov. I’m always ready to go:-)

    • Hey, you’re coming up my way! I live half an hour north of Gettysburg! πŸ™‚

      *sigh* I guess I’m alone in this. I feel downright anti-American! LOL

  6. Have fun, Pam. Phil and I really enjoyed our trip up there. I need some wine made on there. We need to talk

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