Road Trip Across America – Part the sixteenth

Washington, DC

Miles Driven: Took the metro!

Today was a relaxing day. Madeline and I went grocery shopping, made hash browns, and hung out for a while watching Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 1. We were planning on going to part 2 tomorrow, but after watching part 1, we decided we needed to see it today. So we did. And we took the Metro. And I still think the actresses who play Ginny Weasley and Lily Potter look alike. That was the day. Tomorrow we’re doing more, I promise.

It doesn't actually end - I can always reread the books.

I think I will take this space today to instead talk about driving foods. Snacks are important on a road trip because they give a little boost of energy when you are flagging. And if you are driving, you don’t want to be flagging. This is especially crucial if you are by yourself and don’t have someone to swap with or talk to you to keep you alert. Also, they keep me from getting too grumpy to enjoy the scenery.

A week or so before I left, I bought a bag of popcorn (lightly salted) and a bag of dried pineapple. I didn’t want anything too salty – I would drink too much water and have to stop too often – or too messy, so popcorn seemed like the perfect solution. The pineapple just looked good. I mentioned this to a few friends from school (Ken and Kevin, I believe) and they were quite adamant about the superiority of pretzels over popcorn as a driving food, as popcorn gets stuck in your teeth. I hadn’t even considered this. I had initially rejected pretzels as either too salty (the thin ones have too high a salt to pretzel ratio) or too dry (the thick ones are a lot of pretzel per bite). And I prefer them with hummus, which seemed a little messy.

The popcorn lasted until South Dakota, and the guys were right. It stuck in my teeth on a regular basis. It was quite annoying. So when I went to the grocery store in Bloomington, I decided pretzels were the way to go. I was still concerned about the salt-to-pretzel ratio, so I went with the “Olde Tyme” style – the thick ones that are about 3 inches across. I was still full from Thursday night when I left on Friday, so I didn’t have breakfast. The pretzels were open before I hit Ohio. And I was right, they were too dry. I coud have a bite or two, but then my mouth felt too dry to have any more.

The dried fruit is good (I’ve also gotten apricots), but sticky. Nuts are too filling and chocolate melts in the car. Fresh fruit drips and/or needs to be peeled, and vegetables have to be chopped before starting in the morning. I’m glad I’m done with all of my long drives – nothing more than 6 hours for the rest of this trip – but I’m still looking for the perfect driving food.

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~ by Genevieve on July 16, 2011.

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