We began our annual journey to sunny, we hope, Florida on Saturday morning. It is hard to believe that this is our fifth year. The last three years we have traveled the I95 route down the east coast that is so congested with travelers. This year we decided to use the I88 to I81 to I77 to I95 route. It has brought back many memories for us. The last time we attempted to go this way was 2007 when we got caught up in the Valentine's Weekend Blizzard and spent many unplanned days on the road. Prior to that eventful trip we had driven this route often to visit my parents in North Carolina and our children attending college in the Carolinas. We estimate about 40 trips in all down I81. Of course, we noticed quite a few changes along the highway especially new commercial development.
Except for a few snow flurries the first morning, the roads have been dry. It is a relief to have less traffic and no tolls. I have also enjoyed the scenery especially the Shenandoah Valley. The first morning we ate breakfast at the Penn/Cann truck stop which was a traditional stop for us. The food was not as good as we remembered so will not stop there again. Saturday evening we stayed in Winchester, VA and ate at a Ruby Tuesdays. We had a gift certificate from Christmas (thank you, Suzi and family). Mary and I had the Valentine's special for two which included an appetizer, two entrées, and a decadent desert. It was all delicious and fun. On Sunday we drove to Charlotte, NC and were greeted by 60 degrees. Today we will visit the NASCAR Hall of Fame before continuing our journey south.