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Starting Location:  Harrison, Pennsylvania Ending Location:  New Castle, Delaware
Weather There:  Foggy, 45°F

Weather Here:  

Clear and still, 59°F
Starting Time:  7:01am Eastern Time Ending Time:  6:47pm Eastern Time
Starting Mileage:  27,406 Ending Mileage:  27,836
Total Drive Time:  430 Total Miles to Date:  2,100 miles
Guys selling Pie seen:  1 (streets of Philadelphia) Today's discovery:  No sales tax in Delaware! :)

We engaged in one cut-it-out segment of the trip, and jumped from State College up to Interstate 80, completely skipping the western chunk of the state (perhaps for another time... or, perhaps NOT for another time). As you'd expect, there were the usual little stops here and there, but the bulk of the trip today involved Philadelphia and walking about.

6:00am In an effort to get things moving sooner (i.e. back on schedule), I set the alarm for 6am instead of the somewhat random times the last few days.
6:18am Tubby actually muddled from the bed and did his morning thing. I, for one, was already ready to roll.
6:34am Out of the hotel and onto the interstate, we did a mile or so of the stop-and-go traffic as folks moved from highway to highway. I was bored, but figured a nap so soon after waking up would be inappropriate.
7:05am We hit downtown Harrisburg and began our wanderings.
7:29am Our Chevrolomobile was pointing down the highway and we began our trip to the next town up the line. Along the way, we got to pass through some nifty valleys with the fog at 10-15 feet off the ground, making the place look like a sea of fluff with the occasional island of tree branches and leaves poking through.
8:54am We hit State College as we neared Interstate 80 (after we trimmed western Pennsylvania off the map completely for this trip). While I knew a college was likely there given the name, I'd never realized it was Penn State.
9:14am I led the group back to the interstate after a perilous detour at the mini-market with fresh Krispy Kreme doughnuts. (Of the six I bought the crew, I didn't get any, Robin one, and guess which Tubby twit ate five...)
10:49am Lots more driving, and we find we are in the seemingly ultimate party feel of university life. Ooh, where were we located; sorry. It was Bloomsburg.
11:12am Departing, we make good time until we start hitting the lane closed deal all the way down to 580 and beyond.
11:38am Soon after a merge, while still stop-and-go, Tubby moves the car to be down the center, as if to stop (or at least slow down) the number of cars trying to get ahead of us. Funnier yet, a semi truck behind us copied the tactic, and it worked out for us all quite well.
11:43am Sitting in traffic anyway, I shot some pictures of the trees nearby. It seems that the current Indian Summer may not be totally messing with me, since I see fall colors -- leaves that are red, orange, yellow, goldenrod, brown, and sometimes forever green. (Pictures would be like the ones here, here, and here.)
12:20pm We finally arrived in Stroudsburg, fed the car, ourselves, and fired off a few pictures. Literally, three, if memory serves. The town was nice and cute and all, but it didn't have much to kick me with the feeling that they had something new, different, unique or particularly fun for all ages. So, we moved forward.
12:49pm After lunch, we hopped onto Interstate 80 again, except oops -- wrong road. We figured it out, but not before we ended up in New Jersey, and having to return to Pennsylvania and pay the $0.75 passenger car toll.
1:58pm The car stops for a look-around in Bethlehem, but it seems to be somewhat vanilla in nature.
2:29pm We left Bethlehem, obviously, and I saw the next up was Allentown. Given trying to get to the big city at a decent time, we did a glaze-over visit of Allentown, and hit the highway south.
3:52pm Touchdown into Philadelphia.
3:55pm As we were creeping along 16th Street (aka Highway 611), we saw a guy in the center divider holding up two cling-wrapped pies. Yessir, he's selling pies much like the homeless occupy the center lane (in some towns) and beg for spare change. Does selling pies here work? I'd guess so -- he didn't seem like it was his first day on the job by any means.
5:46pm We're returning to the car, and a city cop screams by. Naturally, I was forced to take a picture by Mr. "I Like Flashy Lights." So enjoy the picture, or just skip it.
6:13pm Safely running south on Interstate 95 for the stopping place (Wilmington, Delaware or thereabouts), we got an in-your-face of the sun setting.
6:47pm We find a EconoLodge on the south side of the Interstate 295 bridge, which is conveniently near dinner and shopping options. And the place offers free internet connection (network wire not included).
7:02pm After settling in, we head to Wal-Mart to purchase a network wire, and a few other things for Tubby, including Diet Pepsi to load the fridge for our morning departure.
7:21pm We get to register 10 to check out, and we are met with two amusing experiences. The first is the clerk, Gina, telling the woman in front of us she's missing the cover of the Fahrenheit 9/11 DVD. Looking at it, I point out she's actually picked up FahrenHYPE 9/11, which is a documentary on the original documentary by Michael Moore. The woman said she didn't want to buy that one, and left it behind.
7:22pm Tubby puts his stuff on the belt, and is a bit bothered by the lack of those separator thingys.

Gina rings Tubby out and gives him a total of $41.12. Really, why? Looking at the purchases, it seems I've also paid for the diapers and cereal for the guy behind us, and the credit card is already charged. The conversation, as near as I can capture it:

  • Tubby: That's not mine (gesturing to the bag of diapers and cereal)
  • Gina: Oh shoot. What the... I don't know what to... (flips on the flashing light for a supervisor)
  • Guy Behind Us: Yeah; those are mine.
  • Gina (to Tubby): Well, what you have to go is go to customer service for a refund.
  • Tubby: The credit card already went through?
  • Gina: Yeah.
  • Tubby: Even though I hadn't signed it... neat, I guess.
  • Gina: Hu? Anyways, take this wit'ch you to customer service, and they'll refund you.
  • Tubby: That doesn't do this guy any good... (voice trailed off, of course; Tubby's a mumbler)
  • Gina (to Guy): You'll need to get another box of cereal.
  • Tubby: The diapers aren't mine, either.
  • Gina: For... oh.
  • Other Guy behind Guy: Can't he [Guy] just pay him [Tubby] for the stuff...?
  • Gina: (blank stare)
  • Tubby: Yeah, that's easy. It adds up to... $11.50.
  • Gina (to Guy): Yeah, but he [gestures to Tubby] ain't got no baby.
Tubby and Guy both ignore this incredibly stupid statement. Guy peels off $11 and gets change for $1 from another customer -- Gina didn't know how to open the till without ringing something up, apparently. Guy hands Tubby $11.50, and we all exit the store, leaving Gina completed at her wits end -- and I can only surmise that is a short trip indeed.
7:25pm Our purchases are dropped off at the car. Tubby discovers he wasn't so brain-dead as to leave his Eeyore sweatshirt in the Motel 6 near Washington DC two nights ago. (So much for my trip to Disneyland to replace the missing garment -- dang.)
7:27pm We stumble into Applebee's for dinner. April is our server, is tipped about 17%, and we leave.
8:31pm And yes, we're back at Wal-Mart. We discover, while reviewing our dinner check, there is no tax charged on sales here. So, we returned for two DVDs from the store, figuring at the inflated price of $20, we'd be saving $2 or so in tax, or at least that much in shipping, so the cost of the DVD is actually that much cheaper.
8:44pm The car was topped off for the morning, and we locked into the motel for the night.
8:51pm The ritual of writing updates began with the sounds of some show on Lifetime, then something else, and finally ER.
12:51am The updates are done and posted. And I can't figure out why they are taking as long as they are on this trip, but I assure you, it's making me sad.
1:14am All things said and done, I'm off to bed. Nighty-night.

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