So my pilgrimage home is complete. The drive from Charlotte, North Carolina to Rochester, New York doesn’t sound like a big deal. Thousands of people drive twice as far for the holidays, but most of them probably didn’t wait until they were 25 to get a driver’s license. Needless to say, friends who didn’t know that I had finally started driving were dumbfounded when I arrived in town. Those that did know were terrified at the prospect of me driving that far in holiday traffic. What they all forgot was that I am stubborn and when I decide something is going to happen, it happens. I have that kind of power over the cosmos.
My trip was almost a tour of the Mid-Atlantic. I drove up to DC first and hung out with friends overnight. Nothing beats starting out a trip with watching a friend try to convince a bar full of people that the Super Bowl Shuffle was the first rap song. I was up way too early the next morning (thanks for keeping me up til all hours R) and off to Ithaca. I stayed with my cousin, who is a student at Ithaca College and his roommates. I had forgotten how college kids party and thought I could stay up all night talking and drinking with them. I packed it in around 2am, apparently I am out of practice.
The next morning I drove in snow for the first time…if you know Ithaca at all, you know that driving from downtown Ithaca to out near the airport is a pain in winter. Try it in a snow squall with no snow tires (I love my car!!). Spent the day eating none stop and hanging out with my family. It had been way too long since I had spent a holiday with the motley crew that is my father’s family and I can’t wait to do it again.
Day three it was on to Rochester and bonding with my god-daughter. I really wish I was able to spend time with her more often. She is one of the coolest teenagers I have ever met; certainly much cooler than I was at her age. We went to see Harry Potter at the IMAX. Nothing beats that giant screen! The dragons were cool on the small screen, but unbelievable at the IMAX. (Yes I have seen the movie twice…it’s that good.)
Saturday night was my high school reunion…more on that later.
Sunday…what to say about Sunday…it hurt…it hurt BAD. Had breakfast with my aunt and cousins and hit the road for DC and an overnight with another friend. Not getting to sleep until 4am, or maybe it was later I don’t really remember, and then getting stuck in all of the post holiday traffic heading south, in the rain, was a type a pain I have never experienced before. Had a great time catching up with my friend though so it was worth it.
I was up the next morning and on the road again at 8. This time for Richmond and lunch with a friend in seminary there. I was nice to wander down 2 lane roads through Virginia and enjoy the late fall scenery. We had lunch in Carytown, I never knew Richmond had so much to offer. It looks pretty crummy from I-95.
Then it was back to Charlotte; which has no trendy walking districts to have lunch, no extended family to goof around with, no friends to stay up talking with until all hours (all my friends here are workaholics like me and most are engaged or married), did I mention that it is an ultra-conservative town?. Not that I have ever been I huge fan of Charlotte, but my trip definitely did not improve my opinion of the town. What was I thinking buying a house…it’s like having a short leash, and I’m starting to chafe.