As I left the park I stopped at the National monument and then I found Valley Forge road that took me to Hiway 202 and then Hiway 252 which was a little longer than the toll road 476 but I like to see the country side. Hiway 252 becomes 320 or N. Providence Road and led me right into Chester where I found the Days Inn just in time. I was hungry! King of Prussia was crazy, Chester was a little more relaxed and less overwhelming. In King of Prussia they have the huge Mall and that makes things busy.
There is a Staples on 202 off Henderson road not far from the King of Prussia Mall where I packed up some items and had them shipped home with UPS. I am finding that helpful when I can’t resist books and literature buy them at the conferences or along the way. With the new fees they are adding on the airlines added weight is not a good idea.
I settled in to the Days Inn in Chester and found a diner next door, yeah salad bar! Signs out of my room window pointed to I95 and that was good because I was going to be up at 3 a.m. to get myself to the Philadelphia Airport. My flight was at 6:08 a.m. and I was not going to miss it or be rushed.
I managed to get a little sleep but 2 a.m. was there before I knew it and I was up because I could not sleep and 3 a.m. was my real target. Soon I was out the door and on my way to the airport. Getting onto I95 was a little odd but I managed it in the dark. I was told to take Exit 12 on I95 going North to the Philadelphia Airport. I found the Car Rental Return Road without a problem and was back at the Budget Lot in without an incident. I had completed my circle of Eastern Pennsylvania.
This is a major major feat for me. As I have aged, I have found that I am less and less excited about driving and that swishing cards, big speeding trucks and unfamiliar territory, hills and other assorted driving conditions do not thrill me. So I plan and study the routes carefully and try not to scare myself and other drivers. I am patting myself on the back for this accomplishment. There were a few mishaps and I had to double back on some things because signage was terrible but no disappearing streets like in Hartford.
The Philadelphia Airport was sleeping when I got there at 4 a.m. There was no food or drink that I could see available. The United ticket counter was empty of humans till about 20 minutes later. The security for D gates had not opened up and that was another 20-30 minute wait. So I probably could have chopped off 30-45 minutes from my arrival time but I would rather spend it in the airport at the gate reading a good novel (like reviewing Eragon for the coming of the 3rd in the series due out Sept 20th) then get caught in long lines at the ticket counter, security or other problem unforeseen. I know I was born a worrier!
All went well and I was on my flight at 6:08 a.m. and on my way to Dulles, yeah United had me going from Philly to Dulles to Chicago – 3 flight changes. I had used my UA Mileage points and they changed it on me about a month ago. It worked. I made it through all three stops without a problem but it was a long day of being in airplanes and various airports. I am familiar with Dulles (Wash D.C.) and O’Hare (Chicago). So that helps. I actually go to the airport website before I go and get a map of the airport. Philly’s was terrible. The back of the Hemispheres Magazine in your airplane pocket has good information and maps on airports.
Things got a little dicey in Chicago when people were lined up due to messed up flights. I heard someone on their cell phone talking about running out of fuel? That sounded scary.
I was determined that since I got that far, Chicago, and United had already changed my flight plan to stick it out. The 3rd flight was delayed a little but according to my hubby we arrived on time in Seattle and he was glad to see me. He gave me a big hug and kiss and then he went off to find my luggage which actually was there. I must be the luckiest traveler ever. I just smoothly get through airports with very little trouble. My time may be up one of these days. HA!
So I am back on my own turf here in Shoreline, Washington a city just on the northern border of Seattle and still in King County but right on the border to Snohomish County. We walked into the door at my home at 4 p.m. Pacific time Sunday, September 21, 2008.
Now the process of unpacking, reviewing my research, documenting my research and figuring out what I have to do in the next weeks begins.
This is not totally the end of this blog. I will be fixing some glitches, contact those who have made comments and thank them for their interest, add more pictures and links and making some ending comments. I will probably keep it up for about a month and then move onto other things.
Thanks for watching!