If you’ve read even one of my blogs on this site, you will know that I’ve been commuting long distances for a very long time. I’ve driven in the worst of weather; snow, sleet, ice, hurricane-force winds and rain. I’ve driven in some of the most challenging cities, Los Angeles, Chicago, Detroit and Atlanta to name a few. I categorized the drivers in Michigan as “fast and furious.” Atlanta drivers are impatient and obnoxious. In L.A., who knows what going through their heads, but they just don’t seem to give a crap! Chicago; my second home town….can’t say a bad word!
On April 19th, I flew into the Philadelphia National Airport at approximately 10 p.m. Eastern time and needed to commute to Atlantic City, New Jersey for a seminar I was presenting the next day at 9:00 a.m. I was told it would take approximately one hour. As I hurriedly got my luggage and the rental car without a snag, I thought….wow this is going smoothly, I’ll get there in time to play a few slots before I turn in.
As I entered the Walt Whitman Bridge to merge onto the Atlantic City Expressway, also known as NJ 42-S, I was immediately confronted by two lanes of traffic merging down to one because of bridge construction. Now let me preface the next part of this story by saying…. I’m a pretty courteous driver. I use my turn signals, I’ll wave other drivers in front of me and I leave good distance between me and my fellow drivers. I also know HOW TO MERGE into one lane of traffic. Unlike those habitual rude azzholes who like to speed down either the closing lane or the berm and then rudely “cut the line,” as they would say. Truly an action that at one point in time got people thrown out of amusement parks!
So on this particular evening, after flying all night, eating a handful of peanuts for dinner and trying to get to my hotel to relax and get my thoughts together for my freekin RELAXATION seminar, “I was not havin it!” Gosh darn it if I was going to let some creep in the typical Beamer or Escalade, cut in front of my rental car. Approximately 45 minutes later, I was across the bridge…the only person to cut me off was a taxi and I thought….he doesn’t give a sh*t if he dings that taxi….I’ll let him go since I really don’t want to pay the $1,000.00 deductible for the rental.
That’s not the end of this story…not by a long shot. I had been warned by the shuttle driver to 1.) not use my cell phone, that would cost me a $2,000.00 fine in Jersey, 2.) not to pump my own gas…that’s another $1,000.00 fine and finally, 3.) obey the speed limit.
I was determined to get from point A to point B, unscathed and without fines….after all, I was also there to gamble and needed the cash for those one-armed bandits! The entire drive was a nightmare of Jersey drivers riding my bumper, speeding up, pulling in front of me and then slowing to the speed limit so I was forced to then pass them and get over into the normal driving lane. Now just repeat what I just wrote for the next hour and that’s what my drive into Atlantic City was like. Then there was the frequent driver that could not make up his/her mind on what lane to stay in or even if there WAS a lane to stay in!
Suffices to say I lived to write about it….but I won’t be going back any time soon. Good luck to those who do!