Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Journey to Yankeeland

We were supposed to leave Saturday (May 21) at 8a.m. Things did not go quite as planned. Here's what happened on our trek to the north:

Day 1: We didn't get into our cars until around 8:30a.m. Peter was riding with me and Alex was riding with his mom. Petter and I pulled out of the driveway and waited in the street for Alex and Norma to follow. They weren't pulling out of the driveway and Norma begins to flag us down. His car wouldn't start... We tried to jump his car with two different sets of jumper cables which to our dismay did not work at all. Norma called Triple A for help. Peter and I went down the street to get some McDonald's breakfast because after all, a McDonald's breakfast is ALWAYS a must when beginning road-trips. When we got back to Alex's house, Triple A was there working on his car. They tried charging the current battery for a while and then finally replaced it with a new one. We ended up getting on the road at 10:30a.m. YAY! We were finally en route to the north! I've been so anxious to move away because I've never lived anywhere else and this is an exciting new chapter in my life. We left Baton Rouge and headed over to Slidell to visit Norma's sister who lives there. We had a yummy lunch and great talks with his family. I got to meet his Aunt Andrea, Uncle Paul, cousin Kevin, his wife Sophie and their daughter Isabelle. When we left their house at around 1:30p.m., we had intentions of driving as far as possible. We originally wanted to hit Blacksburg, Virginia in the first day. Since we had a delay in our start, we decided to just go as far as we could. Leaving Louisiana was not as easy as you'd think. Alex and I were in my car with Peter and Norma following in Alex's car. Right as we passed the Mississippi state border, we get a call from Peter that they've broken down on the side of the road. We turned around and went back into Louisiana. I was out for a whole 15 minutes and the magnetic force pulled me back to Louisiana lol. Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!! When we got to where they were at on the side of the road, Norma had already called to get a tow truck for the car. Alex and I drove to the Firestone where they were to be towed to back in Slidell. Once Peter and Norma got to Firestone with Alex's car, we had to wait for the guys there to charge the battery so they could run tests on it to see what was wrong with it. It was the alternator. The alternator had completely drained the brand new battery. Firestone luckily had the parts for Alex's Cadillac and were able to fix it. They said it was going to take three hours. It was 5p.m. at this point so we went across the street to this local seafood type place for dinner. The guys over at Firestone finished working on Alex's car at around 7p.m. which was much earlier than expected. Everybody thought it was a good idea to make some headway that night. Our plan was to drive to Birmingham, Alabama and spend the night there. I drove from Slidell to Birmingham straight (5 hours). Norma and I followed Peter and Alex. After about two and a half hours, we needed the guys to switch with each other because Alex was swerving on the road and almost hit an 18 wheeler. Norma and I were both yelling in our car behind them "ALEX! ALEX! ALEX!" and probably having minor heart attacks lol. We pulled over at the next rest stop where I yelled at Alex "Alex, GET IN THIS CAR NOW!" He said it was because there was a lot of wind and the Cadillac was a heavy car to handle. I just felt better with him not driving at that point. We got to the hotel at a little after 1a.m. and crashed for 7 hours.

Day 2: We all woke up at 9a.m. There was free breakfast at the hotel! So nice! We left Birmingham at 10a.m. with plans to make it to Rockville, Maryland where his Aunt Joyce and Uncle Greg live. It was a VERY long day. We left Birminham, went through the northwest corner of Georgia and through Tennessee. We stopped around noon to get lunch at Subway somewhere in Tennessee. We stopped at a few rest stops in Virginia. We finally made it to Rockville, Maryland at almost 10p.m. Saturday night. Alex's Aunt Joyce was so sweet. She made us spaghetti with marinara sauce and salad with some beer bread. The bear bread was very yummy. She said she got it at Trader Joe's which I am told is like a Whole Foods. Can't wait to start exploring there. At around 11:30p.m., Peter, Alex and I decided to go into Washington D.C. which was about 20 minutes away from his aunt's house. When we got there, we stopped to walk in front of the White House. The secret service had the entire road blocked off. It's quite humbling to stand in front of the White House. It was really beautiful. Peter talked to one of the secret service guys and asked "Where's Obama? He told me to stop by anytime I was in town to have a drink". The secret service guy did not laugh at this and told him that Obama was in Europe. We got back in the car and went to see the Lincoln Memorial where yes, I read the Gettysburg Address in its entirety for the first time. I've only really ever heard the first few lines. Thank you Louisiana education! lol We then walked over to the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial. There were SO many men's names on that wall. It was haunting and rather sad. We then drove past the George Washington Memorial, Congress, Watergate, and Georgetown. I'd really love to go back to Washington D.C. one day to explore more in the lighter hours. We didn't get back to Aunt Joyce's house until almost 2 a.m. We had to stop and get gas because we were riding on empty for about 20 minutes.

Day 3: Aunt Joyce had cereal, milk and coffee out for us when we woke up. I slept in the basement with Alex and his Momma. I've never slept in a basement before. It was like any another room in the house except it was downstairs. After we ate, we filled up on gas and headed out of Rockville, Maryland. We drove into Hoboken, New Jersey for lunch and to stop by a certain bakery of course. Lunch was ate at Grimaldi's (no, not the same one in NYC). Lunch was pretty yummy. We walked down the street to Carlo's Bakery. :-) There was a line out the door. A teenager in a Carlo's Bakery sweatshirt opened the door every so often to let people in. He gave a number to each person who wanted to order something. We didn't have to wait too too long. We were in and out in about a half hour. There were SO many yummy looking pastries. I got two canollis and a mini chocolate cake filled with chocolate mouse topped with more mousse and a strawberry. Alex and Peter split a lobster tail and some canollis. Norma had a little pie filled with custard. After we ate, we went back to the car to get Peter's stuff. He walked to the metro and rode home. I got to drive from this point... and I got to drive through NEW YORK CITY... I was a bit scared and nervous but I made it through. The Lincoln Tunnel was a lot of fun to drive through. It was like you were inside of a ride at a theme park. Whoever said having like 6 or 7 toll booths of people driving into a two lane tunnel was a good idea, should be shot. That part was scary. After driving for about 3 hours, Alex and I switched driving. We got into Natick, Massachusetts around 9p.m. and unloaded our cars. We have TOO much stuff... jobs and an apartment should come soon hopefully.

We've been here for two days and two nights now. I had an interview yesterday. They wanted a second interview today. I realized that it was not where I wanted to work as I found it was commission based and not salary based. Alex and I are still on the job hunt and then we'll be on an apartment hunt. That's it for now...

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