It took me three and a half hours to drive home from work today. Three and a half hours. I work 14 miles from my home.
When I left work, it took me 50 minutes to get from the 40th St on-ramp onto 520 to get to 405. This normally takes about 5 minutes. 10, maybe, on a bad day. By that time, I had figured out the reason for the back-up -- the 520 bridge was closed "due to high winds". 405 South had a crazy stop and go wait line to even get on the highway, so I figured I'd take 405 North. It would maybe take a little longer, but if it was moving, it was an improvement; I was starting to get really tired of sitting still.
405 North was moving maybe 20-40 miles an hour. So I'm driving on my merry way, when I see a sign that says highway 522 to Seattle, or something like that. I'm not familiar with this highway, I had thought I would drive all the way to the intersection with I-5, but at this point I'm pretty sure I'm farther north than the upper edge of Lake Washington and it's probably a good shortcut over.
Except that it's the worst shortcut ever.
It's more stop and go than the highway has been. Turns out it's a city highway, with traffic lights every few blocks, and traffic is barely moving. I could walk 10 times faster. But I keep hoping it will get better - I'm an optimist, yo. At one point, I stop at a red light, and some asshole comes blazing up behind me, honking his horn, actually bumps his car into mine, and then pulls squealing around me to run the red light. Yeah. Being an asshole is going to get you there way faster. Dumbass. At this point I am starting to get pretty stressed out myself. And angry. There is this little ball of anger growing in my stomach. Not too near the baby, I hope, because that can't be nice stuff to sit near.
Did I mention that I'm starting to get really hungry? And that when I get hungry, I get morning-sick? So in addition to being just plain old pissed off, I'm getting really nauseous.
Nearly an hour later, maybe 5 or 10 miles from my starting point on 405, I think - what if there's a parallel road just to the south and it's less crowded? So I work my way south, hoping to continue making my way east and south into Seattle on a road that is actually moving, but I get my directions all switched around and before I know it I'm back on 405. Except I'm 10 miles further south than I was when I left it. So I decide to go south after all - it's several hours later now anyways, the traffic should be getting better, right? Except that it's not. It's still stop and go. There are 5 accidents that I pass on the way. Everyone else is angry and stressed out and driving like shit. When traffic finally starts moving a bit, people are all driving like asses. 5-10 SUVs cut me off along the way. I guess I should feel lucky that I didn't get in any accidents myself.
Finally got home, only to find that I had missed a lesson I was supposed to teach by about 5 minutes, and the guy had come and gone.
When I left work, I meant to drive home, stop at the store, pick up some produce, meat, and cook up a nice dinner. I was planning to have such a relaxing evening. But now the evening's almost done, I haven't eaten anything, I messed up with my lesson, my body is all cramped and freaking out from sitting in the car for 3 1/2 hours, and everything's shot.
At this point, I am angry, irrational, feeling sick, upset, and can't handle anything. Everything and everybody pisses me off for no reason at all. I storm around a little bit, look in the refridgerator for something to eat, get frustrated, kick the fridge, drop to the floor, and cry hysterically for a while.
I'm done crying now, and feeling a bit more rational. But I'm still angry and upset. And for what? For a stupid drive that took a little too long? Yeah, that's worth it. Really.
I hate when negative emotions take me hostage like this. I hate being so, so angry. And feeling helpless. And being irrational and emotional and freaking out my roommates with my self-indulgent tantrum.
Is this hormones? Or is it traffic? Or is it just me?
I'd be happy really, never to drive again. Once I stop working on the east side, I don't think I will ever really want to go back. People over there can come over here. I don't want to have to cross those stupid bridges again.