Xmas with the fambly was, as always, a fun treat with a bit of nostalgia mixed with modernism. We drove up early on Xmas Eve, and had the Five Fishes (we still haven't been able to make it to the mighty seven fishes, but there's always next year...) followed by presents, roaring fire, and fine beaujolais wine. The Five Fishes this year were smelts, homemade crab cakes, scrimps and scallops over linguini, and salmon dip made by Shan who is becoming quite the honorary Italian. The following day it was scotch (or "scottish" as we call it in the streets. The streets of SW DC, I mean, specifically G Street), and homemade ravioli and treats. Then came the news.
The East Coast was once again going to be smacked by a blizzard. Oh, joy! Blizzards of course are God's way of saying "the hell with you, my most shameful creation! I should have stopped after inventing monkeys". Because this was going to screw travel plans big time.
Sunday, during the blizzard we stuck with homemade pizza and beer, and hey, why not more scottish, and some bloody marys to round it out. The snow just kept falling.
So on Monday, we decide to brave it--the roads were mostly clear, and traffic should be light. What we didn't count on was New Jersey deciding against keeping their on-ramps free of big rocks.
So this bit of destiny--a rock about the size of a baseball--was hidden among sorockme unplo, wed bit of snow on the on-ramp where the Garden State Parkway meets the Turnpike. "Turnpike" comes from the Iroquois word for "up yours, Jersey!" and sure enough, I blow my tire when I hit the rock. I limp the car past the toll booth and off to the side to change it.
Ever change a tire in cold wind on messy pavement? It's not as fun as it sounds! The whole ordeal might have taken about a half hour, during which no fewer than six drivers (Shannon counted!) pulled over near us, to wipe snow off their roofs and drive off without asking if we needed help. Yes, Jerseyites are all basically Hitler. Screw them and their fat cheapass governor, who can't clear rocks off of his main roads and certainly can't get help for stranded motorists. Say what you will about Southerners, but they will at least stop and help stranded motorists without a second thought. New Jerseyites on the other hand are scum and this is probably a result of the decades of raw sewage dumped in their state by New Yorkers. May they rot in hell.
After changing the tire, I needed to add air to it, and hobbled to the nearest rest stop to do that. Ah, a rest stop--the very name "rest" implying some relaxation. Not in Jersey, friends! This one was crowded and inadequately plowed, with a line for gas resembling the Jimmy Carter years and making me wonder why there was no disco music in the background. After a ridiculously long time--made worse by the cheap hipster ahead of me who was chagrined that they only sold "super" that day--hey, dumbass! Just pay the extra and go back to penny pinching tomorrow. We gotta get gas, twerp!--I finally gas up, add air to the tire, and finish the drive. New Jersey, I shall now do everything possible to never drive in your worthless state again.
And today, after doing some work remotely, I attempt to put up a shelf and drop the goddam thing on my bare toe. What a way to end 2010.