Our plan had been to start on the road by 6 am. Since J doesn't drive, he came to bed at about 3:30, effectively waking me up. I was psyched for the trip, so we ended up on the road by 4:09 am. Yeah, it was early. J hadn't slept, so a little ways down the road he conked out. Normally I hate having to drive with nothing to do. Our iPod connector wouldn't work right, we hadn't checked out any audiobooks, and after awhile, I just get sick of the radio. However, this time was okay, especially when I realized I could one-ear my iPod directly and kick out some podcasts on the long drives. This trip meant I got several episodes of the KnitPicks podcast under my belt.
We managed to miss all major traffic jams, even driving right through St. Louis. I remember when I was young, anytime we were driving through St. Louis between Michigan and Oklahoma, my dad would point out the arch. This drive took us right under it.
I love driving in big cities. I love how the roads overlap and how the skyline looks with the big buildings.
We got to the hotel around 3, which was perfect timing since that was check in time for our room. The hotel we picked was the Super 8, about 6 miles away from the convention center. You couldn't beat the price, and when we were booking, our main goal was just to have somewhere to sleep and shower. The room itself wasn't bad. The beds were comfy, and the room was clean. They didn't give us any coffee until our last night there, though. And the TV guide was from June. But that wasn't really a big issue, and we were able to take advantage of the Continental breakfast all week, which really helped with our budget.
After a short rest, we headed out to see if we could find the convention center. We found it, but got fairly lost along the way. Still, when you're not on a timetable, getting lost can be amusing in a new city. The only really irritating thing was all the road work. Before heading back to the hotel, we stopped at Wal-Mart to get sandwich fixings so we wouldn't have to spend more money than needed on dinner. We'd munched on our snacks all day, so our budget didn't suffer from expensive fast food.
All the driving and the early morning had us crashing out pretty early, which was convenient considering how early we'd be getting up the rest of the week. I ended the night with some tea, knitting, and "The Dark Knight."