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Sunday, November 21, 2021

The Great Escape

Mrs. Flusher had vowed to eat only burgers and fries for the entire duration of the trip. And so it was that I found myself after having left Canada around 10:00am and driving until 8:00pm (notwithstanding an hour break) back in the car, driving around Chambersburg, in search of a snort of the Old Nasty, some supplies, and food. McDonald's. Quarter Pounders with Cheese and fries.

I opted for the upgraded Quarter Pounder with Cheese de Luxe, and threw bacon on top of that.

The result was dinner, gut-wrenching.

In the weeks and months prior to the trip, I had been really, really worried about Chippy's wellbeing. She's a wonderful dog, and has been very healthy, but she's old. Like almost 13 years old. She has quite a number of joint issues - basically pain in the ones that bend. No more long walks for Chippy.

But we managed to keep her settled for most of the trip, and we got her into the Tercel and out of the Tercel, and she peed and pooed, wolfed down a cup and a half of dog balls and a Gabapentin, and she was just fine for the night.

The La Quinta in Chambersburg put on a very acceptable breakfast and I made the most of the hot sausage disks, crumbly steam table eggs, and a vat of that gooey favorite, Country Throw-up Gravy, also known as CTUG. You might know it as biscuit or sausage or white gravy, but Crikey, just see for yourself. That there looks like barfy creme du hurl.

I'd figured out a route way ahead of time but I have to be honest, I have had nothing but confusion and frustration with Google Maps. I'm not a stupid man... I'm a dumb, stupid man. Even Jimmy Poon was foiled by planning a route on the computer and then porting it to my phone. The turn by turn directions were nowhere to be seen.

And everytime I connected the phone to the car by bluetooth (so I could hear the turn by turn directions, voiced by fake Siri), music selections would being playing, starting with Chicago's AM Mourning. 

This day, however, the selection was the theme from The Great Escape.

The other thing that would happen is somehow, on it's own, the piPhone would decide not to play the voice directions anymore.

The route I wanted completely avoided the Warshington area. I did not want to go anywhere near any large centers. Google maps warned of an accident, which I noted first thing in the morning, but I figured by the time we got there, it would be cleared up.

Never mind Chippy, I should call this dog Glassy. As in Glassy Gabapentin Eyes.

We set out and made about 15 miles, heading south - clear sailing. Until at one interchange, three vehicles with Charlie Brown sweater markings pulled onto the interstate - just, just, just ahead of us.

Like by 10 seconds.

They spread out in a Kitty Bar the Door formation and blocked the traffic. We came to a crawl, and then a stop. Then a crawl again.

An exit came up and I took it, and rolled down a highway (11, if I recall) and got back on the interstate ahead of the nasty trucks. We saw a huge accident on the other lanes, too. So they were blocking traffic to facilitate power-washing or chopper evacuation or some such.

Then fake Siri started spouting about an accident and slowdown and how we should change routes and did we want to change routes and I thought maybe that accident I'd seen warnings about was still ahead, and I said, "We should listen to fake Siri and just do as we're told."

We were told to take the 2-4-d exit on the battleground turnpike turbo wankway to south 38820 double-barrel D and spring from cages on highway 9, and do this and that and next thing you knew we were in an 8 lane across free for all of criss cross high speed white knuckle driving through interchange hell.

Two hours we fought our way through the interstress before things settled out.

Guess what? Fake Siri had sent us straight through Warshington.

We weren't supposed to join I-95 till Fredricksburg.

A rest stop came up and I took a much needed break.

We got sorted out, whizzed, gave Chippy a drink of water, and started up the Tercel again.

The first thing we heard was... The Great Escape again. And no directions.

The best part of the day was a late lunch stop at Waffle House. The weather was noticeably warmer than at home, and I had the sweetest waitress, who called me Hon'. (First, the Quad Queen went in and ordered and paid for... a Cheeseburger and Hash Browns. She'd eat in the car so Chippy wouldn't be alone and freak out.)

My server's name was Candy, and I left her a $5 tip on my chicken sandwich for being so kind and helpful.

It was a Grilled Chicken Cheese with Bacon sandwich, and it was incredible. Hot off the grill, juicy, and accompanied with scattered, smothered and covered hash browns. CTUG I'm talkin', y'all.

Chippy stayed nice and relaxed.

The rest of the day's driving was much more pleasant, and we found ourselves and a Hampton something or other in Benson, North Carolina. Halfway there, or maybe a little bit more than halfway.


    1. Makes my heart happy to see your writings again, Flusher. I hadn't realized how much I missed those CTUG pics and descriptions...welcome back!

    2. Those buns look like they were left in the sun a little to long but if they tasted good, who cares! Keep on truckin'!!!


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