The Merritt Parkway completely betrayed me today. I saw the backup as I exited 95 and almost changed my mind, but I thought, surely it can’t be like this the whole way. I should have made more careful note of the lack of trucks and buses on the interstate; that’s the only reason the Merritt is ever better. Brake lights from start to finish. At one point, I got off in I-don’t-even-know-where, Connecticut just to see if I could follow some back roads. Just to move. We had to move. It didn’t save any time (it probably cost us a little) but we did get to see some really enormous homes, professionally bedazzled with twinkling Christmas lights before navigating back to the Parkway.

Ultimately, it only took us an hour and a half longer to get home than I had anticipated, but I had already accounted for an extra hour of traffic in my first estimation. (I hadn’t accounted for a get-out-of-the-car lunch stop, so that was added in there, too.)

I have to hand it to us: we’re pretty good road-trippers. The Who is a master navigator and I’m pretty generous in response to his requests. If a peaceful and pleasant day-long drive requires a shared box of Munchkins and his near-exclusive control of the phone, I am happy to oblige.

Tomorrow we (read: I) have to unpack and clean the car. That’s the dark underbelly of this whole situation.

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