mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

In Indy...

Well, in case anyone is wondering, I made it safely to scenic Indianapolis, Indiana.

I left Baltimore around 7:45 this morning. Tom-Tom decided to send me out 70, onto the PA Turnpike (76/70), and back onto 70 to 476 and to the scenic Residence Inn North Indianapolis. I got here around 5:30, so Tom-Tom's 10 hour estimate was right on the money.

I stopped four times (not counting a stop at 7-11 at the end of my street before I left) - gas and a diet mountain dew at a Sheetz in Breezewood, PA, a quick restroom stop on the PA turnpike, gas and two chili hot dog taquitos at a Pilot in Ohio, and a donut and coffee at a Tim Horton's on the other side of Ohio (they were pretty tasty, by the way).

I think if I ever have another business trip of this length, I'll probably fly. That's not to say I regret driving - I feel like it's one of those things that everyone should do once. The Cobalt I had as a rental was fine for the most part - it handled well, was peppy enough, and got between 20 and 25 mpg. The lack of power locks takes some getting used to. It did have an aux jack, so I was able to listen to my Zune, and two 12-volt outlets, one for the Zune and one for the Tom-Tom (I spent $45 on Zune accessories at Target yesterday so that I could use the Zune - way more than I wanted to spend, but better than 20 hours of silence). One pet peeve of the Cobalt - one of the outlets was behind the left-side cupholder, so I couldn't put a drink there with the Tom-Tom plugged in.

A observations:

-Ohio is very flat, and there is a whole lot of nothing in it. I spent about 220 miles there, and it was the hardest part, because it was well into the trip, and because it was just so straight, without much to see.

-Starbucks has truly achieved market penetration. There were several times where I was like "wow, I'm really in the middle of nowhere" and then noticed a Starbucks sign.

-truckers who insist on pulling out right in front of you so they can go 2mph faster than the truck next to them deserve a special place in hell.

The hotel is nice - it's a suite, so I have a full kitchen (dishwasher, full size fridge, microwave, and dishwasher) - aside from the the 12-pack of diet coke I bought and stuck in the fridge, I doubt I will use it much - but it was about the same price as a normal room at another hotel.

Dinner tonight was from the drive-thru at the steak-n-shake across the street - burger, fries, shake. It was pretty good - a cut above mcdonalds.

I'm trying to figure out what I'm going to do the next couple days. Training runs 9-4, so I've got evenings free. I did find out that there is a Fry's Electronics nearby, so I want to go there one night - I've heard good things on Fatwallet about them and have always wanted to see one. I'd love to visit the Indianapolis Speedway, but it's 20 minutes away and closes at 4, so unless my class gets out early, I don't know if I'll make it. There is a gym nearby that hotel customers get free access to, so I should probably get a pass and go there a few times, especially since I won't be eating very well this week - the last time I went to training, I gained like 10 pounds.

I'm hoping the training goes well - I'm going to be pretty much the only person trained in SCCM, so if I can master it it will be great for my career - and if I can't, it's going to be a big problem.

I'm also, as usual, feeling a little guilty about leaving Nibbler alone, especially since I'll be back for a few days, then gone for a few days more to go to NJ for Easter. She's in good hands, and after Easter I'll be back in MD for a while, but I still feel bad leaving her alone.


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