I would like to discuss traffic. Mostly my happiness at not being stuck in it today. Also how thrilling it was not to be stuck in it on Wednesday even though we left Richmond the morning before Thanksgiving and headed into the belly of the beast that is I-95 North up to Philadelphia for Turkey Day. Not a slow-down worth mentioning. One of the most efficient car trips to Philly ever. Can I talk about it some more? Can I tell you about our last minute decision to take the Harbor Tunnel through Baltimore? It really was something to see. And we didn’t have to pay for one good trip with a bad return trip.
I don’t mean to gloat, but isn’t it better than somebody whining about traffic? I’m sure Twitter is full of that. No need.
This Thanksgiving I was reminded of another one or two or three Thanksgivings I had 30 years ago when I was JYA in Dublin at University College. Our program had a group Thanksgiving for us that we young morons cooked–first time I ever picked feathers out of a bird and did anything to a turnip. Then after a bad play and a better dinner a few of us rushed from St. Stephen’s Green to catch a ferry to Liverpool from whence we took a bus to Durham and met friends of mine from college for their dorm’s version of Thanksgiving. I see squash pie and a dark room that looks like it should be in England because it was and that’s all I got. A winding road to a grocer’s. Maybe a hobbit or ghost or something. Then the next night their program had a more formal Thanksgiving for all the Americans around and we were invited and had our 3rd in a row–the first one with sherry beforehand. I see long tables covered in white tablecloths and more squash pie. It looks more like Hogwarts than it possibly could have been. I’m fairly sure Maggie Smith was nowhere to be found. Something tells me there is no way in hell that I comported myself as someone at a formal dinner at an English university should. I was dressed more for a soccer match I daresay. But that was quite a Thanksgiving trip–hitchhiking from Durham to London where we crashed at some other college friend’s flat, but not before almost losing touch with half of our traveling party and loitering around a posh hotel lobby that was to be our meeting place until it became clear we couldn’t stay there a minute longer. Somehow it all worked out. No idea how. A fake Brit who was really an ex-pat awful American in a Jaguar had something to do with our trip at some point. And broad smiles at a bus stop in Liverpool on our way to the ferry terminal. The smiles had nothing to do with the guy in the Jag, I swear, unless it was that we’d gotten rid of him. Or perhaps the smiles were merely giddiness at the almost completion of a most successful Thanksgiving trip extravaganza.