Thursday, July 27, 2006

Spend (half of) your hump day in Richmond

I had class until 9:30pm on Tuesday night and had to be in Richmond at 8:00am Wednesday morning for Commonwealth Project Management training, so right after class I ran home to pack a bag and got in the car.

I had no problem getting down to Richmond and finding my hotel. The Crowne Plaza was right around the corner from the training, and I had never stayed at one before. The hotel and the room were nice (all 6 1/2 hours I was in it), but all too soon my alarm went off and I was out the door.

Training was a waste of time for the most part. There were 120 Powerpoint slides, and on slide twelve we learned that all schools that are members of VASCUPP are exempt from 2/3 of the state's IT Project Management Policy (and the other 1/3 represents 1 project every five years for us). I did meet some very nice people from Mary Washington University, and had a tasty hamburger for lunch at the Ale House just around the corner.

Not soon enough, it was 3:30pm and time to head back to my car and get on the road. Once I was outside the fan and back in 95 I figured I'd stop at the next rest area and change back into shorts and a tee. I stopped, changed, and didn't even make it out of the parking lot before I heard "THA-THUMP THUMP THUMP"...flat tire. I jacked up the car, put on the spare, but couldn't find anything wrong with the tire (sidewalls were fine, no nails or anything in the treads), still no idea what went wrong.

I got back in the car and had a text message from Joey. She knew already that I had a flat because she'd just passed me going down 95 to South Carolina and saw me putting the tire into my trunk. Very odd.

To add insult to injury, once I got off 95 in Quantico a 100 year old woman ran me off the road at a merge and forced me into a row of giant orange plastic barriers. The side of my car is covered with rubber residue, though I guess it could be worse (it could have been a guard rail).

Maybe next time I'll spend a full 24 hours in Richmond, and my car will come home in one piece.

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