iPhones, Igloos and I-90

iphone Alternate Title: Tollroads, Turnpikes and Turkey

One of the many things I love about my new car is that I can plug my iPhone into the audio jack and play through the speakers. The added bonus is that when I use the GPS and it says ‘Turn left in .2 miles’, it will mute the song so I can hear it talk. Best toy ever. We learned this on the trek from Chicago to Cleveland for Thanksgiving. And it was a lovely, fun Thanksgiving. The iPhone was highly amusing, playing it’s best road trip songs, most of which had some relation to where we were (passing Gary, Indiana and we got Michael Jackson songs). I don’t believe in fate or predestination, but I often wonder if God’s just having a field day playing with my iPhone when I’m in the car. Even today, on my way to work, I got “Code Monkey” as my first song.

By my rough calculations, we averaged over 30 miles per gallon on the drive. That’s based on how many times we had to fill the tank (3), how long the drive is (362 miles one way) and the fact that we zipped around town a lot, helping out shopping and picking up siblings from airports. Not to mention parking, oy. I drove through Illinois and into Indiana, until it was realized that the speed limit in Indiana is 70mph and I was, using cruise control, keeping up with traffic. This caused someone to have a heart attack and when we stopped for pee breaks and gas, the keys were taken. I was okay with that.

The Toll Road, by the way, is a $20 pain in my ass. That’s right, it’s $20 in tolls to get from Chicago to Cleveland. You can get it down to about $16 or $17 if you work it right and skip the Skyway, but still, that’s a lot of dough! The worst offender is Ohio, who charged me $9.25 to go from the Indiana/Ohio border to Cleveland. By comparison, to drive across the entire width of Indiana it’s only $6.75. I think it’s something like $12 to go across Ohio, and no, it’s not THAT much wider than Indiana. Annoyance. If you make the drive, you’ll need two 5-dollar-bills, 8 ones, and about 2 bucks in quarters. Just so you know.

When we got there, I drove around Cleveland, parked at Taffy’s a couple times, zipped around town to find a Caribou (thank you!) and generally enjoyed it. I did cause the first ‘scratch’ on the car, brushing up against the freshly painted pillar in Taf’s garage. It washed right off with a hand-wipe, though, so I’m not feeling too bad about it.

I’d write up a lot about Thanksgiving, but I think I’m just going to say this. I love my family.

large_snow_rantThen we went home. In a damn snowstorm.

Okay, it wasn’t really a snowstorm, but we woke up to 2″ of snow on the car and by the time we passed the airport, you could barely see 500 feet. The car is an AWD monster, though, and while no one was actually perfectly between the lines, we managed to stay in the clearest part of the road and it was okay. Amusingly to me, everyone was following us, as we seemed to be the only SUV doing well. The accumulation wasn’t actually that bad, and the minute we left Erie County for Sandusky, the snow stopped.

This is where I make a funny point to my gamer friends. See, I’m running a game that takes place in a fictional town by the lake in Erie County. I tell everyone it’s a Hellmouth, it’s cursed, etc. The fact that the storm was pretty much only in Erie County had us laughing all the way to Indiana.

Other than that, what can I say?

Happy Thanksgoosing people.

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