Last weekend the Weekend Postcard was of our trip to the east coast of the USA. This week the postcards hit some of the high points of our 3 month stay. From mid-state New York to Richmond, Virginia must hold some of our country’s most uptight people. The drive east is rather easy and low stress. In New York state, the tempo of traffic picks up tremendously. More cars on the road, more aggressive drivers, angrier people, more horns. But, they do have a sense of humor about it all; the state of New York has signs advising drivers that they need to yield to blind people. Now, that’s funny.
I am sure that the state motto of New Jersey is ‘Get out of my f***ing way, a**hole. Hey, what are you looking at? Did you hear what I said?’ The state bird is the middle finger. The state song is a car horn.
I was in the Washington, DC area to use the National Archives II in College Park, Maryland. We found a place to stay within a mile of NA II. The original plan was for me to bike in. The roads and the traffic called that plan into question. I took a shuttle bus between the Archives buildings to get into DC.
Inside “The Beltway” of highways that ring Washington DC, it seemed that not one day went by without some sort of road rage-ish behavior. In Washington, D.C. we watched a cab pull to a curb at a corner, after which a Mercedes blared his horn, just behind the cab, for thirty seconds. Then, he pulled up along the cabbie and screamed obscenities at him. The Mercedes drove off, stopped with a screech of brakes, backed up yelled again at the cabbie, and finally he careered away into the DC traffic. Duuude, easterners take free speech very seriously.
A number of the photos were snapped while I was in the bus, so you may see some reflection from the shuttle’s window. My advice to anyone wishing to visit Washington, DC: take public transit and take a Valium. One look at L’Enfant’s plan for DC should dissuade anyone from driving in that city.