Unbeknownst to most of my friends, I snuck back into Cambridge undetected last Friday night. Of course most of the sneaking happened in the last few minutes before getting off the Mass Pike, while the previous 15 hours was spent on the road. Given that it was Labor Day Weekend eve, I decided to avoid I-95, the tried and trusted East coast connector (Richmond, VA, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Newark, New York City, Providence and Boston) in favor of a less populated but slightly longer I-81 (switching over to I-84 to avoid ALL major cities). The trip was just over my threshold for driving in one day, so I decided to stay in Knoxville Thursday night and make the rest of the trek on Friday.
Having grown up in California, I’m a professional long-distance driver. I don’t have any problem driving alone for 12 or 15 hours straight with only required stops for gas, drive-thrus and rest stops. I have a number of patent-pending techniques for passing the time, such as the infamous "breath-holding practice," where I repeatedly time myself to see how long I can go on one breath. Sure, it might be dangerous, but it makes the trip fly by! And I broke my own record this trip with a time of 1:56.
So, suffice to say I’m back in Cambridge, and I do miss the ATL quite a bit. Even though it’s not a coastal city (not even the third coast), I think it’s one of the sweetest cities in America to live in. Based on my experience I have observed the following inequality:
NYC > Atlanta ~ Chicago ~ S.F. >> Boston