Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Let It Snow (to stop traffic)

I had my doubts about commuting to work this morning. I thought twice about the endeavor when I looked out the window as I made my daily lunch. An odd silence echoed the sight - a parking lot on the highway. To say that Washington DC traffic is horrible is an understatement - every year it climbs the tables to now reside at #2 worst in the US behind NYC - but today's sight on I-270 that runs from Frederick to the Beltway was unusual. Car-to-car parking lot, literally stopped on a five-lane highway.

Out at the car, I made an easy decision - I would take the backroads to the office. My decision was confirmed when the daily traffic report made my mobile phone vibrate incessantly (every morning, 8am, the traffic report!). I turned on the radio, and the news became worse than the text messages - back-ups on 495 outer loop, inner loop, 395, 95 north and south, Baltimore-Washington Parkway, George Washington Parkway, 50, 66, Ohio Avenue, New York, nearly every major route in and around DC with at least one accident.

It took awhile to get going as I waited for lines of cars trying the same trick as me. Then, I was held up by one, two, three, four, five accidents on the back roads - which were mere stop-offs on a slow caravan out to Laurel. 90 minutes later, and I phoned home to Wendy to let her know that it was a long ride.

No bother, though - I switched the radio on to local 97.1, the "official radio station for the holidays" that has been playing around-the-clock holiday music since before Thanksgiving. I was dialed in and smiling as "Let It Snow" warmed up the car. Absolutely right...
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