time to move north
We began driving north on Friday, July 6. I had a full few days in Atlanta, hanging out with friends, getting the car tuned and oiled and packed. Packing the car this time included using Courtney's new bike rack and fixing both our bikes to the back of my Hyundai. I was dubious of their security, and developed a habit of watching them in the rear view mirror for the next month, a habit which I still found myself doing when I entered the highway in September, long after the roadtrip.
We began our caravan from Stephanie's house, again with me and one kid in my backseat, and the Polak Volvo full to the brim. We drove to Durham the first day, spending a night with family. On Saturday we took the drive to DC to hang with the Zubas. And we spent a good two nights there, happy to rest from driving for a time. I think we were all worn out and perhaps battling a little sickness. I recall getting a migraine which put me under for a while. On Monday we continued to NJ (where I took the picture of the neat sign i've passed a million times) where I would rest for travels for long enough to empty the car (and mother paid for it to get really cleaned) and hang with family. (With Daniel and Anna, reading old favorite picture books: Caps for Sale and Even for a Mouse. Mark, ever adorable; getting a haircut with mom and dad.)
On Thursday, Courtney flew up to Newark and our adventures in New England began. I picked her up from the airport. After lunch and tea at home, we reloaded the bikes and said goodbye to family. We drove to Boston.
Our drive there was not that exciting, except when we passed a sign that said Bear Mountain, and we played Dylan's talkin' song (have a picnic in my bathroom) [Note also "Palisades": every time I go back north I see something else that is from a B. Joel or Springsteen song that I hadn't noticed before: "I saw the Empire State laid low; life went on beyond the Palisades..."], and when we got stuck in traffic in Hartford and made a shortcut through the surprisingly pleasant little city. (I guess surprising to us because we had no idea about it. I was sorry later to learn that we missed a visit to Mark Twain's manse.)
We arrived in Boston (Cambridge to be more specific) listening to "Driving in MAAA-ssachusetts...what the hell is a rotary" on the CarTalk cd (which I temporarily stole from the Polaks) when I came across a rotary and suddenly the words took on a new dimension of meaning. Okay, I really didn't know what the darn sign meant when it said "rotary ahead," and even if I did realize that this was a MA term for traffic circle it really wouldn't have helped. Besides, I wouldn't call this a traffic circle per se: a mass intersection of 6 streets, a vague blob probably worth three lanes with no lines on the road. So, granted I didn't really know what to do. So, I was a bit timid. So, the car behind me didn't like that. So, they honked. So, Courtney and I laughed really hard, and turned up the song.
In Boston, we were very thankful to get to stay with a friend of Courtney's. We went out to Cambridge that evening and got some dinner. We walked around Hahvahd Square and saw the law office of Dewey Cheetam & Howe. And we walked around Harvard's campus too. It was very nice. I think we felt a bit jealous.
The next day: Boston.