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Monday, June 11, 2012

Travellers Tales 2012: The Adventure Continues

There are probably some of you out there wondering why I keep going back to the Outer Banks every year.  "Oh, how boring." You must think.  And in most cases you could be right.   We aren't a very adventurous bunch.  We pack up the Jeep, drive the same route every year, stay in the four wheel drive section, sit on the beach, eat too much, and then come home.  Well, tough shit.  That's my idea of a relaxing vacation.  However, this year proved to be the exception and I will spend the next few posts giving you the play by play.

First off, the trip down.


Not necessarily.  I decided... well, it was decided for me, that we would try to avoid the DC Beltway at all costs.   Last year, Matilda, our self named GPS in the Commander tried to kill us by telling us to take an immediate right into the Jersey barrier on the Beltway.   So, I took some advice from a coworker who avoids the Beltway by going through Berkley Springs, WV.  It took some doing, but I managed to get Google to calculate my route through Breezewood and around the Beltway.  I had to add Berkley Springs as a destination in order to get it to correctly route around DC.

My father-in-law drove to Breezewood and then I took over for the next leg.  We came down through Berkley Springs and my wife read off the directions.  Since Matilda started yelling at us to get back on 70, we shut her off.   What did she know?  She tried to kill us last year.  Unfortunately, so my wife tried to do it to us, this year.

She made a slight miscalculation that led us on a wild and wonderful tour of the back roads of West Virginia.  While on 522, she misread a turn that said take route 9 and stay on it for 137 miles.  What she didn't realize was that the trip up to that point was  137 miles and that the added destination of Berkley Springs causes the trip to total up mileage to that point.  So, we stayed on 9 headed towards Paw Paw. 

For the next hour we drove around bends, up hills, around deer, and through the dark, listening for banjos.  At one point a sign with the speed limit posted at 55 mph was sitting about ten feet in front of a sign for a sharp turn.  "Are these people nuts?"   After realizing we were headed West and probably not far from Kentucky, we turned Matilda back on and started calling her Siri.  She seemed to agree with that and started leading us out of the wilderness onto route 522.

We used the printed directions sparingly and followed Siri's lead all the way to the Outer Banks.  No tractor trailers on fire causing another hour delay, no broke down cars causing a twenty minute delay.  From then on, it was smooth sailing.

Next up; why all good vacation stories should include the phrase, "And then the cops showed up".

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