The drive home takes a little longer these days because bridge repairs have narrowed the Interstate to just one lane. Usually most drivers are smart and courteous enough to get over in the proper lane as soon as the road signs tell them what to do. That's why I thought it wouldn't be too much trouble to take the fast way home this evening.
I forgot it was Friday.
Friday is migration day. That's when Wisconsin is flooded with Illinois residents who come to our fair state to get away from their bleak environs. Don't get me wrong, I'm from Illinois and it's a beautiful state. But what we're really talking about is Chicago and its surrounding suburbs. It is indeed a gray, crowded place where they don't seem to teach people how to drive.
That explains why traffic was backed-up for miles on the Interstate. When the road wasn't a parking lot, traffic moved very slowly. My clutch hand was cramping up as I tried to keep the speedometer needle from moving past zero yet still keep the engine running and the bike itself from becoming parallel with the pavement.
At one point, a very large trucker hung his head out his window to strike up a conversation with me. "Trade places with ya!" he shouted. I held up my left hand and said, "I don't think you'd want that, my clutch hand is cramping up." He laughed and told me that I should make a U-Turn at one of the State Trooper turn-arounds that was coming up and find a different route. He said he saw a lady in a pickup do it just a minute ago. I said, "But that's illegal."
He told me not to be a pussy.
A few seconds later I was right next to the U-Turn. There was no traffic on the other side of the road. That's when I dove onto the little patch of concrete that connected both sides of the Interstate and hit the throttle. I didn't have to go fast. In fact, calling attention to myself like that was really stupid, but if I was going to break the law, I might as well throw up some gravel while I was doing it.
The plan was to segue from the traffic jam on the way home into something else that happened when I got home. But the post has now become about the traffic jam as I have forgotten the real reason why I started to blog this evening in the first place.
I'm sorry. You get what I intended to be merely a build up to the actual post. This is all you get.