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I Really Wish I Could Social Distance from All These Thoughts

21 Jun
White Farms

The scene at White Farms in Ipswich, Mass., on Saturday, June 20, 2020.

Yesterday, I went up to the North Shore, to explore the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway, which I heard was a nice and picturesque drive. Turns out, either I didn’t know the area well enough, or I should have parked my car at various points and walked to the water, or something else, but with very few exceptions, from Lynn to Gloucester, the drive was neither coastal nor scenic, and I was disappointed.

So, after what felt like a couple hours of aimless driving and wasted gas, I turned around and headed back to the city. (At least, I think I turned around. I really didn’t know where I was or in which direction I was heading for much of the time, but I do know the full route goes all the way to Salisbury and I’m pretty sure I only made it to Gloucester.)

I didn’t want the day to be a total loss, so before I left the area, I decided to stop and get some ice cream at White Farms, a small local stand in Ipswich that had been recommended to me. It was quiet when I got there, thankfully, which meant I could go right up to the counter and order a two-scoop waffle cone — Mint Oreo and Vanilla Fudge Brownie, yum — then go back to my car to enjoy it. Continue reading

Good Advice Is There. We Just Have to Listen to It

9 Oct

It happened again this weekend: I got lost.

I went to Wilson Farm up in Lexington, and from there, my next stop was Target in Watertown.

The area’s not completely foreign to me, but I decided to use Apple Maps anyway.

I hit the road, and Siri began telling me where to go.

When I got about a mile from the farm, she told me to make a turn … and because it didn’t look right to me, I decided to ignore her.

She recalculated, and I ignored those new directions too.

She tried a third time, and no, I didn’t follow those directions either.

I knew where I was. Sort of. Siri had to be taking me on a bad route. (Not an outlandish assumption to make.)

Except she wasn’t. Siri was trying to get me to my destination the fastest, most direct way she knew how. I was being stubborn, as usual, and not listening to her.

As a result, I wound up going places where I had no idea where I was.

Continue reading

Lost and Found

19 Aug

I got lost yesterday.


My company had its annual summer outing at the Nashoba Valley Ski Area, and on my way home, I decided I didn’t like the route the Google Maps app on my iPhone was suggesting (i.e., Route 2).

So, I opted to go back home the same way I got to Westford: By driving past Walden Pond and through the ‘burbs, by my office, and then onto 128 and the Pike (or up Trapelo Road, if there was traffic on the highways).

I thought I knew where I was going.

I was wrong. Continue reading

Thanks Again, Google Maps

21 Mar

Yesterday, with the temperature up in the lower 70s and the sun shining bright, I decided I had two options for how to spend my day: I could go for a long drive or I could go for a long walk.

I decided to combine the two and head out to the outlets in Wrentham. Continue reading

Seeking Space

22 Sep

I’m trying to figure out when some people lost the ability to park a car.

I used to think this was a problem isolated to Newton — particularly at the Star Market on Route 9 — but of course, I was wrong.

Tonight, for example, when I came out of Costco up in Waltham, I saw this sight to your left.

The photo doesn’t really do it justice, but suffice it to say, the minivan had parked at such an angle that it was almost blocking me in my spot.

I ask: If you had parked so horribly, wouldn’t you pull out and right yourself? I mean, even after you had gotten out of your car and seen that you were over the line? And especially if you saw how close you were to another car … a car that could very easily back up and hit your own car? Continue reading

Oh, the Places I’ll Go

19 Jul

There was an article recently in GQ about how we’ve all lost our ability to get lost, thanks to GPS and other tools that show us where we want to go.

Well, ironically enough, in the month or so that I’ve had an iPhone, I think I’ve gotten more lost than I ever have, because rather than just rely on directions I’d printed out, now I check and re-check the Google Maps app, re-calculating my route when I think I’ve made a wrong turn, over and over — which, of course, only makes it worse. Continue reading

Lesson Learned

4 Jan

There’s a saying that says if you learn something new every day, then you live a good life.

(Wait, there isn’t a saying that says that? Well fancy that, I’ve just learned something else.)

Well, for as long as I can remember, I’ve disliked the parking lot at the Landmark Kendall Square movie theater, especially in the winter, when not only do you have to stand in line in the cold to pay nearly $5 for parking, but then you have to roll down your car window on the way out to insert your ticket into a machine so the gate will go up.

It’s annoying.

I know, it’s a pretty silly reason not to like the garage, but the bigger issue, I suppose, is that, given the location, driving to the theater is, like, your only option for getting there.

So I don’t appreciate having to pay so much for parking, especially when there are cheaper options available in the neighborhood. Continue reading

Don’t Walk … So Slowly

13 Dec

Alright, so I get it: Pedestrians in a crosswalk always have the right of way.

But here’s my question … If the light for cars is green, and you’re crossing the street when, technically, I (or any other driver) have permission to drive without stopping, and it’s not like you started to cross when the light was still red, why can’t you walk just a little bit faster to get to the other side of the road?

I’m not going to hit you (really), but come on.

The light at this time is not in your favor. You’re just being a pain in the arse.

Especially if you’re on your cell phone.

Hurry it up.

Idiot Is Too Kind a Word

3 Oct

I went to see High Fidelity tonight with Liz, and at the Boylston T stop afterward, we bumped into Kristina, who was taking the B line home.

So Liz and I got on with Kristina, and I rode out to Babcock St. and walked home from there. When I got to my building, I got a bit of a scare: my car was not in the parking lot.

Holy shit.

Did someone tow it? Was it stolen? Had I parked it in the wrong place? Continue reading

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