May 21st, 2008

Kevin and Lisa

The Tortoise and the Hare

Lisa suggested the title of this post, as she continues on the latest leg in her cross-country trip. Slowly and steadily, she's making her way to Columbus, while I will have to get up much too early tomorrow morning in order to be at Oakland Airport for a 6:25 AM flight.

US-36 becomes I-72 at Hannibal, Missouri, as the road crosses into Illinois. To Lisa's annoyance, there are no rest areas along this stretch of I-72, because she was definitely needing rest. She spent a restless few hours in a parking lot near Springfield before moving on and calling me from the Pilot Truck Stop in Decatur. (Ironically, there is a rest area just east of Decatur, according to IL-DOT's web site.)

She thought of refueling before turning in -- there was a gas station that will accept her card within sight of the parking lot -- but decided to put it off until getting up in the morning. To her considerable disgust, she awoke to find that the price of gasoline had gone up overnight from $3.86 to $4.06/gallon.

Lisa also observed that the reason it's taken so long to install milepost markers on California highways is that Nebraska used them all up by posting them every two-tenths of a mile. (Those who have not driven in California may not be aware that California has lagged seriously behind the rest of the USA in adopting the milepost numbering of roads and exits.)
Wig Wag

Waylaid by a Train Museum

Lisa called a while ago to tell me that her progress today was impeded by her stumbling onto the Monticello Railway Museum, where she spent a few hours taking pictures and talking to people. She told me she's very disappointed that she pushed the wrong button and therefore missed recording a former Illinois Central engineer talk about his experiences running passenger trains from the end of private service through his retirement from Amtrak.

She also reports that the second rest area on I-74 had a no-long-parking restriction as well and she hopes that the one at the final rest area before Ohio doesn't have that restriction; otherwise, she'll have to find a Wal-Mart and hope for the best. Yes, I know that in general, Wal-Mart stores are very tolerant of people parking overnight in their parking lots, but Lisa is a trouble magnet when it comes to these things. If there's one Wal-Mart in the country that runs off overnight parkers, she'll manage to find it.
Kreegah Bundalo

Now, If Only It Works

I reckon that I need to set my alarm for 2:30 AM if I want to be on the 4:30 AM train out of Fremont BART on the way to Oakland airport and eventually to MARCON. There's no point in going any earlier because the AirBART buses don't start running until 5 AM; I'll be on the first one of the day. I've purchased a five-day BART parking pass. I figured that the $25 parking was about the same as taxi fare both ways, and I worry about taxis being able to find my apartment, so for $25 I get peace of mind about getting to/from BART.

This means that if I want anywhere near a good night's sleep, I need to go to bed in the next hour or so -- roughly six hours earlier than I usually go to sleep. OTOH, I often get sleepy just about this time of day, so maybe it will work for me.
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