Travel fun: Syracuse edition

Liveblogging the road trip…

So after the Thanksgiving morning game Thursday, I had a Thanksgiving dinner that couldn’t be beat, courtesy of my Aunt Kathy and Uncle Ron in Sherman, Conn. After a nice day with the family, I hit the open road. Well, not so open up there. Uncle Ron got me back to I-84 West by the back roads, including a couple of one-lane underpasses beneath railroad trestles.

But I made it, and then came decision time. From Danbury, there are three basic ways to Syracuse. One is up I-87 to I-90, all the New York State Thruway. It’s the most expensive and, I’m pretty sure, the longest. There’s also the other all-interstate path, I-84 out to Scranton, then I-81 up through Binghamton to Syracuse.

That was my preferred option until I got across the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge and found little to no weather problems. So I took the shortest path: the Quickway, Future I-86, current New York State Route 17. Up through the Catskills, northwest to Binghamton, then pick up I-81 there.

Worked great. The left lane was slushy almost throughout, but nothing too bad. (Here’s the wild thing: After a week of hearing horror stories about what Thursday was going to be like — snow, wind, rain, sleet, slush — there was more snow on the ground in Ridgefield this morning than there is here in Syracuse tonight.)

And by the time I got near Bingo at midnight, having been operational pretty much since 7 a.m., I wanted to stop. Recharge. Fill the gas tank and get some coffee.

Did both at a Mobil station off the highway in West Windsor, a frequent load-up spot on the way home from Binghamton. The coffee professed to be “mocha java,” and maybe I should have guessed it couldn’t nearly be as good as it sounded. It wasn’t. It was the most rancid coffee I’ve ever had. Imagine hot water. Now grit it up. That’s about it.

Even better, I tried to dump it out the window on the shoulder… but I was still moving a bit too fast. Some of it sprayed back on my jacket, but most of it splashed against the back window. I’ve got a streak of frozen rancid coffee on the side of my car now.

I’m expecting the paint to be stripped in the morning.

Meanwhile, though, props to the Red Roof Inn at Carrier Circle. They gave their housekeeping staff a short day for the holiday, so some rooms weren’t made up. And so, they upgraded me to a business king room with no charge. Now that I have a microwave, I’m sorry I didn’t bring up the leftover ziti…

Just dumbly, because I happened to have looked it up and wanna share: The brief advance for Friday, you might have seen by now, noted that Chris Madden hadn’t played in a game at Syracuse since the very first game of his pro career. Madden’s Hamilton teammates that night included future Sound Tiger Alain Nasreddine and current Crunch forward Peter Sarno, who tied the game with 7:39 to go. Madden made three saves in overtime, facing a major power play throughout.

More later.

Michael Fornabaio