Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Free Parking

Something amazing happens in August in Washington DC - the people disappear!  Congress takes its recess during this month and commuting for non-Federal employees becomes a dream.  The train was virtually empty this morning.  And quiet.  And fitting for my last two weeks of utilizing public transportation.  Soon I will be trading my fare card for my car keys and driving to work, which will surprisingly take less time.  (As is with most things in life, it's all about the parking.  And parking at my new job is free, baby.)

Perspective is an amazing thing.  If you would have asked me how important parking was in my life thirteen years ago I would have said not at all.  The flat land of Illinois lends itself nicely to ample parking.  But plop yourself down in the middle of a heavily populated urban area and suddenly choosing how to get to work is like choosing a church.

The hot topic in the Carlock house lately is commute lengths.  We're looking for a new home and have been leaning toward Woodbridge, Virginia, which will increase our commute by an hour.  The logic is this:  Spend an hour in traffic, get a huge house with five bedrooms, a yard, a finished basement, etc.  Because around these parts "houses" near DC are extremely over-priced, and well beyond our means.  So we're entertaining the idea of heading for the "country."  (It's not really country, I just call it that because it takes an hour to get there!)  But there are a heck of a lot more trees.  The area we're looking at is right next to the Prince William National Forest, which is actually a National Park.  Lynette thinks she can smell the increased levels of oxygen.  Fresh air.  One hour in traffic for some fresh air.  Is it worth it?  Like I said, it's a matter of perspective.

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