Welcome to the south

Trip Start Jun 17, 2008
Trip End Jun 27, 2008

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Flag of United States  , Virginia
Monday, June 23, 2008

      Finally I'm back! My internet hasn't been working for a few days. I thought it was done, but then eventually I figured out how to reset internet explorer. Then I had to call the hotel's technical support because their network didn't like my computer. Anyway, it was a whole mess, but I'm back now and in my hotel in Norfolk, Virginia. That's right, a hotel. Last night was my first night of the trip in a hotel and I slept great. 11 hours without waking up once, which is really strange for me. The drive from Baltimore to Virginia Beach was only 4 hours and was nothing at all compared to yesterday's drive of 10 hours from Boston to Baltimore.
Right aligned photo tag:
      I've been pretty sick. My last day in Boston I took it easy (for me at least) and walked around Beacon Hill a bit. Then I found a cute deli and had a picnic lunch in the Public Garden. I'm glad I got to see Boston Common and the Public Garden on a Saturday, they were packed! Then I headed back to Quincy Market, which is way bigger than I originally thought. I got a bowl of clam chowder...by far the best I've ever had. The markets were packed too, there must have been thousands of people between the three markets.
      Yesterday morning I woke up in a bad mood because roommates kept waking me up, I felt even more sick, and I knew I had to make the long drive back to Baltimore. I went outside for my morning coffee and cigarette and some guy who was staying at the hostel was asking people if he looked like Matt Damon (he did) and then asking if he sounded like Matt Damon. He was very pleased with the people who said he did not look or sound like Matt Damon. I told him that I didn't know enough about Matt Damon to determine whether or not he sounded like him, but the more he talked the more I realized he did sound like Matt Damon. By the time he went back inside I was practically on the floor laughing because he was asking EVERYONE. So thanks Matt Damon look alike for making me laugh.
      By yesterday morning I had lost all sense of smell and taste thanks to the cold. Oh well, at least I had 1 day to enjoy Boston food. On the drive I discovered that terror is a good way to clear the sinuses. The forecast in Boston had called for scattered thunderstorms all day. I didn't hear any thunder, but I did see some lighting during the drive, which was nice. Then when I got to New York all hell broke loose and it started pouring. I knew I was surrounded by cars, but I couldn't see them. The wipers were on high and I couldn't even see the front of my own car. I really wanted to pull over and wait it out because I was terrified, but I couldn't see anywhere to pull over. Finally I found an exit and pulled off, but there was still nowhere to pull over, so I just drove really really slowly. I know I know, it was just rain. But it was insane! I have never seen rain like that. Eventually the rain let up a little and I saw that I was surrounded by a whole convoy of traumatized looking drivers. To add to the mess there was a lot of water gathering in the streets. If it had rained like that for an hour the streets would have flooded. Finally the rain let up, just in time for me to see that I was now lost in the Bronx. At first I thought that the driver behind me was honking at me, but then I realized that the drivers of New York are just bored in all that traffic and looking for a way to entertain themselves. I mean, where did he want me to go when the light was red and tons of pedestrians are crossing the street in front of me?
      Eventually I made it back onto the freeway but traffic was really bad because of an accident (thanks to the sudden torrential rain) on the George Washington bridge. The delay took me over an hour, but I felt worse for people going northbound. The accident caused them to shut down the entire northbound part of the bridge and traffic on that side was backed up for miles and miles.
       Compared to yesterday, today's drive was very easy and nothing at all happened. In California you take your chances with rest stops. You may get lucky and find a semi decent one, or you may find one that looks as if it's never been cleaned. Remember in the movie There's Something About Mary where he gets busted at a rest stop? Well that rest stop certainly wasn't in Virginia. The rest stops here are amazing. They're huge buildings with tiled floors and hundreds of brochures. I didn't know there was even that much to do in Virginia, but apparently there's enough to fill over one hundred brochures. They have staff there to help with directions and things to do.

       I just got back from Virginia Beach. From my lack of pictures you can tell I didn't spend that much time there...it's not a bad city or anything. Very touristy, but not bad...but moving on. My hotel is in Norfolk, a place I never would have thought to stop. I went downtown and it was pretty cute. If anyone reading this knows why there are mermaids all over downtown Norfolk I'd love to know. It turns into a fun game...kind of like Where's Waldo? but with mermaids. Some are obvious...some are kind of hidden behind roofs of buildings.

       Today I feel much better. I have the use of half of my nose, which means that half of my taste buds have returned. Today the humidity is out in full force. I suppose I lucked out by not having to deal with it in Boston and DC. At least here I'm always near air conditioning. Well, that's it for today. It's time for a shower and then bed because tomorrow it's a 6 or so hour drive to Myrtle Beach. Here's to hoping there's no more sudden downpours.
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Where I stayed
Rodeway Inn Little Creek
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brent on

The mermaid are like the offical mascot for Norfolk.

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