Tuesday, January 03, 2006

D.C. Traffic - We Hardly Knew Ya

Just when I was getting used to 4-day workweeks and holiday traffic patterns, the great rush hours experienced from Thanksgiving until New Years are over. Gone are the days when unregulated merges never occur, less people wait until the final second to cut you off, radio traffic reports are all of 30 seconds, and late arrivees can't say that traffic held them up.

Winner, winner, chicken dinner...you get a traffic-free commute!

We became incredibly spoiled over these last six weeks, just admit it. While my commute into work rarely gives me any significant traffic, my drive home inevitably used to be a traffic crap shoot. The last 10-15 minutes of my drive are the most hazardous to my personal time as I make it around the inner loop of the beltway by 270. Most of the time I run into some bumper-to-bumper traffic, at least by Old Georgetown Road, if not before the curve, but holiday season rush hour turns 495 into bizarro world. I flew around the inner loop without any traffic on 75% of my trips home. It was like driving on Saturday morning. I kept thinking, shouldn't there be more traffic at this time? Did I miss the evite to a huge happy hour for beltway commuters? I wasn't complaining, but just a little miffed by the whole experience.

Watch closely as these elephants reenact DC traffic in real-time.

It was a glorious time of year. The next low-flow time is the summer vacation season and it can't come any sooner.

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