Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Ramblings from a Travel-Logged Mind

This past weekend we drove from Baltimore to Chicago for my nephew’s Bar Mitzvah. When I say weekend, I literally mean weekend—as in three days.

Because of issues with my husband’s job, we didn’t get to leave Baltimore until after 11:00 PM Thursday night. Unfortunately, neither one of us had a chance to take a short nap during the day (in addition to packing, I had to deal with a four-hour car emergency when my tire got a nail in it, and then the tire couldn’t be repaired because of the location of the nail and instead had to be replaced entirely), so we were both bombed by the time was started the trip. Between stopping every hour or so to rest, get coffee, close our eyes “for just a minute,” and/or to switch drivers, it ultimately took us about 15 hours to reach our destination.

We arrived in Chicago a few hours before Shabbos and began packing to leave as soon as Shabbos was over. Two hours after that we were in the car on our way back to Baltimore—once again with multiple stops because we were tired and hadn’t slept much that weekend. All in all, we figured that we spent about as much time traveling TO the Bar Mitzvah as we spent in Chicago AT the Bar Mitzvah itself! (We had to leave Saturday night because of work-related issues that necessitated my husband to be at work bright and early Monday AM.)

We’re not sure exactly how long the return trip lasted; between the time zone difference of EST and CST, and then with the clock change early Sunday AM, we were having major time/clock/accounting issues!

Despite the travel issue, we had a great time at the Bar Mitzvah. It was so nice to see and spend time with the family—albeit briefly. It was also great to see my niece, the Bar Mitzvah boy’s younger sister who, as I told you two weeks ago on this blog, was recently diagnosed with leukemia (please continue to daven for her: Dina Sora bas Shayna Mira. . .thanks!). It’s hard to be in Baltimore while our family is struggling to deal with this difficult situation in Chicago. We are very, very close with this part of the family and hate that there isn’t more that we can do to help on a daily basis.

Before I sign off, I’m wondering if anyone knows what the point is of having the large green signs on the side of the roads in PA that say “FALLING ROCK.” Yes, I understand that the roads are surrounded by mountains and cliffs on either side. But if a rock falls down on your car, the bottom line is that nothing could be done about it. And being a wary driver wouldn’t help the matter—even if you were to see the rock falling, there’s no way you could get out of its way fast enough!

A few months ago, I was driving on a two-lane main street near my home. The car next to me swerved onto the shoulder, and I saw some pebbles fly up from behind that car’s rear left wheel. One second later, one of those pebbles hit my windshield and made a tiny crack in it. There was no way that I could do anything about that tiny pebble, so how on earth would I be able to do anything about a large rock falling from a cliff???

Any suggestions or logical reasons for this would be greatly appreciated.