Just right outside of D.C., at the closest Wal*Mart in Virginia, bright and early, you would have found Adrian and I molded at awkward curled up positions in our car on top of what was once an inflated queen mattress. It didn’t take long to finish deflating the mattress and pull apart what we thought was the greatest discovery in the world of small car travels. A queen size mattress not fully inflated fits perfectly inside our Honda Accord. We were sorely mistaken when we woke because the mattress didn’t stay inflated during the night due to a hole, causing us to mold to the car in uncomfortable positions. (edit – this has been fixed now with an air mattress loaned from my mother that inflates itself)
We took off for D.C. and lucked out on traffic. However, parking was another story. Because of this (and other various factors) we cancelled the tour we had scheduled through Groupon that we purchased months ago. So once we found parking at a reasonable rate ($11 all day, garage parking, 6th street) we hit the streets. You could literally spends weeks exploring D.C. and we hope to reroute back to the city to do just that. However, the hurricane about to blow through the East Coast has caused us to choose alternate destinations, limiting our D.C. visit. We stopped in the Botanical Gardens, and found ourselves inspired by the free tour. We were sold the best egg roll ever, although our stomachs didn’t think so later. Then we checked out Van Gogh at the National Museum of Art, and 7 other famous self portraits, during another free tour. Wandering through out the city, we checked out as much as we could in such a limited amount of time. Something I’ve always wanted to see is the Lincoln Memorial, so toward the evening we made our way over there. It was everything I imagined and more. However, when we started seeing the benches flooded nearby due to storm surge alone we knew it was time to hit the pavement. Hopped in our car and headed towards destination Ohio.
As a road trip souvenir we buy lottery tickets in every state. Once we entered Maryland we decided we needed to pick up our winning ticket. Adrian said to me, “make sure you get off on an actual street exit rather than exit to another highway.” When do I ever listen? I took the next exit, and we found ourselves driving, driving, driving. Nothing, no gas station. Just country backroads, and we were certain this was going to turn into a horror movie. Then at last, lights ahead.
Two gas stations next to eachother. Pulled in, Adrian hopped out, and returned alive. He proceeded to explain to me that we are in a city that does not sell lottery tickets. Everyone around is very wealthy and doesn’t want the lottery sold in there city. Wanting to investigate more we drove to the local restaurant next door. We ordered a Gyro and chatted it up with our new found friend. He explained how famous people like George Bush’s wife comes into the place often, and that the area was surrounded with other mentionables but ‘eh it’s not big deal.’
Since no famous people walked in we decided to hit the road again in pursuit of a city that sold lottery tickets. After getting back to the highway we took another exit up several miles past our first stop. We found ourself experiencing a twilight zone moment. It was another dark endless road of nothing, nothing, nothing. Then the light at the end of a tunnel, a Sheetz Gas Station brightly shined away the darkness. “We’re saved!”
Stopping to pick up our lottery ticket we quickly realized that being saved from the Twilight Zone wasn’t the case. We picked up our lottery ticket, punched our destination into the trustworthy Siri and zoomed away following her clear voice.
“Make a right here” So we did. It didn’t bother us that it was the opposite direction we had come from. Dark roads. Nothing. Darkness. DEER! More dark roads. More darkness. Then we approached a small town. Funkstown. Adrian knew I was becoming paranoid and played off my emotions! “What’s that on that lawn?” “Looks like yard sale stuff… wait! I see a real human skeleton!” Scaring easily, I sped away. Then more dark roads. More darkness. In the distance a bright light shined at the end of the tunnel. How familiar this bright light appeared. It’s red gleam stood in stark contrast against the flourescent white lights. Sheetz Gas Station. The same Sheetz Gas Station. Siri had taken us in a huge circle winding us right back where we started!
“Make a left here.”