The placid pool of the long-dormant canal reflected the things around it as I rode into the increasing darkness. The occasional buzz of traffic on the road nearby pierced the trees as I pushed myself along, but a roar, after a while, reminded me that trains were buzzing by close to 100mph just slightly further away.
It was odd to think that it had been less than 24 hours that I'd been here, but that flight that had pushed back late got only later as we went. We rerouted south due to weather. When finally we emerged from the clouds, I picked out the intersection of interstates 81 and 64 below me, before we headed to the lower Potomac basin and then up the river towards the nation's capitol.
After circling briefly, we were told things were bad, and we'd be landing at Harrisburg. I knew then that it'd be a long night. A direct flight usually means that once you're airborne, you'll make it. But as soon as you are on the ground somewhere, all bets are off. The route into MDT allowed me to pick out the Baltimore inner harbor, York, I-83, the turnpike, and I-81 from the air before we curved gently around to get a gorgeous view of the state capitol on final approach.
When we did land, it took about 90 minutes to fuel and resume the journey, another 45 minutes to fly, and in the end I reached my destination at 2:20am. My friend was due at the hospital at 6. No surprise, then, that rest eluded me.
I allowed myself the luxury of enjoying the canalside jaunt before returning to my laptop to work, take a brief goodnight call, and fall over. If I were to be supportive for the rest of the week, taking the rest when I could seemed like a necessity.