Two weeks ago Lauren the kid an I drove from Orlando, FL to Philadelphia, PA for our vacation. Needless to say we were going against the usual vacation traffic that heads down this way. Here are some highlights from our 17 hour drive.
5:42 pm- Pull out of driveway. I am driving.
5:46 pm-Witness the largest lightning bolt (bolt not flash) we have ever seen, strike about 100 yards ahead of us.
5:47 pm Witness the largest lightning bolt (bolt not flash) we have ever seen, strike about 50 yards ahead of us.
5:50 pm-Stuck in traffic
6:10 pm- Finally start moving at a decent speed.
8:25-Cross the Florida/Georgia border. Lauren starts to sing the James Brown song "Georgia-Lina"
8:30-pm Stop for gas (pay an arm) near Kingsland Georgia. Stop at Wendy's , change Max's diaper, get some grub (couple of burgers and chicken nuggets). Lauren takes over driving.
8:45 pm-Witness on the horizon in front of us, brilliant flashes of lightning. Maxfield falls asleep.
8:46pm- Lauren starts to sing the James Brown song "Georgia-Lina"
8:47pm-Lauren is driving and I am trying to arrange her food so she will not be distracted while driving. I say to her, "Would you like some of my nuggets on your lap?". We both giggle like 12 year olds.
9:01 pm-The flashes of lightning that were in front of us are now all around us. They are so fast and bright and there are so many that appears like a strobe effect. It feels like we are driving in slow motion.
9:15 pm-Witness the biggest lightning bolt (not flash) we have ever seen strike about 50 feet ahead of us. It hung in the air for about 20 seconds dancing on the ground. Amazing
9:16-pm I say "That was the biggest one I ever saw." Lauren giggles like a 12 year old.
9:30- pm Get through the storm. I try to sleep with one eye open.
1:30ish- AM- Stop to pee somewhere in South Carolina. Lauren starts to sing "Georgia-lina".I take over as driver. Lauren tries to sleep with one eye open.
2:35-am Stop near Dillon, South Carolina at South of the Border (tourist trap that is very creepy at this time of night) for gas. (pay a Leg).
2:45-am Enter North Carolina. There are only four cars on the road. A black pick-up, a maroon sedan, an 18 wheeler truck and myself. We are going between 85 and 90 mph. We each take turns being the lead car for about 10 minutes, before moving into the right lane and allowing someone else to take the lead. It was like a dance. We drive like this for an hour and a half.
The timeline gets a little hazy here because the trip was long. Somewhere in Virginia Max wakes up. Virginia is a deceptively long state.
7:15-am Stuck in traffic outside of D.C. (Hi to CAT, Susie and Mrtl's parents who I think all live in the D.C. / Maryland area)
7:30-am Upset that we do not see any signs for Cracker barrel, we stop at Bob Evans to eat breakfast in Columbia Maryland.
8:11 -am I use the bathroom at the Bob Evan's and I hear a man at the sink say "HOLY! Man, I had to wash my hands THREE times." The food I just ate turns in my stomach. He was not talking to anybody.
8:30-am Back on the road and we see a sign for Cracker barrel about 5 minutes up I-95 from the Bob Evans. Damn.
10:45-am. Arrive at my parents house for the start of our vacation of driving around the Philadelphia area to see friends and family. Knowing that in a week we will have to make the 17 hour journey back to Orlando.