I arrived in Springfield, MA close to three in the morning. I checked into a Holiday Inn Express and took my traveling bag into the room. Check out was at noon which was perfect. I took my boots off, turned on the television and lit a joint. I sat back and pondered the trip tomorrow.
On any trip there is a dreaded section of highway. On the road from Boston to Chicago it's the section of Interstate 90 from Albany N.Y. to Buffalo N.Y. This is 378 miles of bullshit highway. Later in 2005, I made the trip back to the Laconia Bike Week as an Outlaw - another brilliant National (LOL). It got to be old to announce Nationals in locations that were less than desirable.
If you have ever driven this stretch of the road you know it's miserable. First, the road is cement not smooth blacktop so you can feel it. That's not the worse thing though, the worse part is the mile markers. The first one says 378 miles to Buffalo. The next sign will say 376 miles to Buffalo, then 374, 372, 370, 368 - you see what I am saying? It's like Chinese water torture...drip-drip-drip. It drives you nuts. I like to drive and not see a sign every 2 miles, otherwise it seems like you are getting nowhere.
I woke up at 10am and I was antsy and ready to go. My plans were to get to Buffalo, check in and hit the bars - maybe even go across to Canada check out the strip clubs. I know I also wanted to go across to see the falls side from Canadian side.
I made myself two nice lines, snorted them and off I went to make Buffalo!
378, 376, 374, 372, 370, 368, 366, etc...etc...
I walked out of the Combination Club a little buzzed but ready to start my journey to Chicago. I figured I would take a week to get there and then have two weeks once I got there, to hang out with my buddies. I got into that big Lincoln Mark V and headed to the expressway. It was around midnight and my plan was to go as far as Springfield, Massachusetts which was about three hours away.
Now if you have ever been out on the road by yourself there are certain preparations you have to make; you had to have munchies. My traveling munchies have always been cashews, pretzel rods, Mike & Ikes and, my favorite, orange slices. Don't forget the water. Now for the party favors - you have to remember everything has to be prepared ahead of time because you are alone and can't be taking your hands off the wheel to roll a joint or do a line! This trip was roughly one thousand miles, but also factor into the equation that the trip was going to be leisurely. I have done the one thousand miles straight through but there was no need for that this time - there was no rush.
Later as an Outlaw, I made more than my share of trips from Chicago to Daytona Beach, Florida - 1,100 miles with only stopping for gas. So for this trip the party favors would be twenty joints in a flip top Marlboro pack, four eight balls - two eight balls stashed in a gym bag and two others in glass vials which made it very easy to do while driving alone.
The road and the blow can really get you wired.
This problem is two fold: first, when you are by yourself you really don't know how high you are until you stop for gas and you have to talk to someone who isn't high. That situation can be tricky (LOL). Second, when you check-in to rest, it doesn't help you sleeping; so having a Xanax ladder is very handy. I really don't like them but they are a necessary evil.
When I left the Combination Club I was buzzed enough that I could make it to Springfield Massachusetts by 2:30-3:00am, check into the hotel and sleep until about 11am. The plan was to get up have some coffee and coke before hitting the road to do the grueling part of the trip - the dreaded New York Turnpike (Albany to Buffalo).
I often would think and compare todays road trip to the trip that the pioneers in covered wagons would make. Those people were cut from a different cloth. What determination they must have had! Well I too was determined to stay focus, rest up and do this job whatever it was...I really didn't care about the difficulty.
This would be the first step in my ultimate plan to run Chicago!