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Day One: Symmetry

08 Jun

Seems like today was a day of symmetry. At least that seems to be the theme as revealed to me while sitting mentally and physically exhausted in my hotel room at the end of the day. But I actually started to notice it the instant my rear hit the driver’s seat bright and early this morning. The starting odometer reading? 23,235. I liked that. The 23, 23, and then the 5, which is, of course, the sum of 2+3. Yes, that’s totally the sort of thing I notice. Yes, that’s the sort of thing I internalize and comment on, at least mentally. And yes, I realize how much of a dork that makes me. But moving on… As I sit here at the desk in my hotel room, tallying our totals and remembering our relatively easy travel day, there are other instances of symmetry.

Total number of states traveled in today? 5 (Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia) Total number of stops? 5 (of varying lengths)

Total number of miles traveled? 616. Total amount of time on the road? 11hrs, 16 mins

Room number at the hotel? 224 (get the addition there?)

And perhaps the coolest incidence of symmetry today? Seeing the Gray family! (A quick visit on the first day, and their Richmond Hill, GA home is the final destination before our return home.)

Cool, huh? Well, I happen to think so. And the truth is, there isn’t much to report about today. It truly was a relatively easy travel day. Which is exactly how I like that first day. The long grind north. I could be happy if it had absolutely no adventures at all. But, actually, today did have an adventure. When Katie Gray commented on my post that CMRT had officially begun she mentioned that there was a great Dairy Queen at exit 90 off I-95 in Georgia. And I thought, cool, that’s actually an achievable goal to aim for as our first stop. In fact, it’s a little further than we usually go before our first stop, so I liked the idea of pushing it, getting a good two hours under our belt before stopping. And it took a little while to sink in, but I suddenly realized that exit 90 was the exit for Richmond Hill! That was *her* exit! So I called and the Gray family was gracious enough to come up and meet us. Sadly, the Dairy Queen didn’t open until 10:30am and we arrived at exactly 10:00am, but no worries, we’re a flexible lot, even if we’ve promised ice cream, so we ducked into the Kroger grocery store right behind the DQ. They sell ice cream, too! A box of plastic spoons and a few individual servings of ice cream later, and we were in business for a sweet visit. It was fun to see them, have a simple, casual visit, and then get back on the road. Everyone was relaxed and happy. Our day was definitely off to a great start.

Of course, the luck couldn’t completely hold, so our sunny sky turned gray and devolved into a terrible rain storm. A downpour. The kind that dumps so much water on the highway I watched a car in front of us hydroplane and fishtail slightly before they regained control. The kind of downpour that has traffic slowed to 45mph at times because visibility and road conditions were that deteriorated. It was frustrating, and required an enhanced focus and readiness, which is, frankly, mentally exhausting. The only good thing that came of it was that the kids didn’t want any part of getting out of the car, so our lunch stop was achieved with a quick run through a Wendy’s drive-thru. That helped to make up for the time lost in our hour and half of slooooooooooow, rain-filled highway driving. Thankfully, in another show of symmetry, the sky eventually cleared, and it once again became sunny and dry.

In another bit of luck, gas in South Carolina was an affordable $3.35/gallon! And speaking of luck, the 2014 Lottery Project is off to an okay start. We’re behind, but not as bad off as last year. The $10 investment in GA yielded a $5 win, and the $10 investment in SC yielded a $7 win. So, the Lottery Project is at an early deficit of $8, but this time last year I think we were already $40 in the hole.

I’m calling today a win. I only had a few moments of driving fatigue, but they were fairly easily overcome. The kids were well-behaved (other than a single gas station squabble over candy, which I shut down quickly). It’s not quite 9pm and we’re in our hotel, everybody’s teeth are brushed, and we’re ready to get some sleep. Tomorrow morning: DC Mall – Smithsonian National Museum of American History…

 

Total states found in our license plate game: 37! (New rule this year: plate only counts if it’s from a state other than the state we’re currently in) And to answer your burning question, no. No, we did not see North Dakota.

 

 

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© 2010 Krista Lindsey Willim