A Vacation of 2,974 Miles
So you may be thinking that we will be spending the next part of the day in Cincinnati, Ohio. But we decided there was more in the area that we wanted to see that we decided to continue to Washington, DC. Now, we still had a ways to travel to get to DC, about 8 hours to be exact, luckily I-70 this was the longest stretch with the least amount of construction! So once again we spent majority of the day driving, which was fine being that we would be able to spend the entire day in Washington, DC! We figured by the time we were through getting gas and any traffic issues we left around 10 am plus 8 hours to our destination would put us to DC in the evening and too late to do much but eat dinner and make a plan for the next day. With only stopping for gas when needed along the way, most of us had food in the vehicle that helped minimize stopping. We had more than food though in our vehicle, we had a case of 30 Monster Zero Energy Drinks, water, milk, and juice for my son. The bad idea about all of these fluids is how often you had to go to the bathroom!
We took turns driving, although I really drove most of the way because I get motion sick when I ride, I tend to take dramine like it candy. Although I had to ride part of the time, I was busy looking and booking rooms before they were gone. I did this on my phone which I highly recomend doing because the saving rate is enormous, and often only want a credit card number on hold to reserve. I often used Choice Hotels to help me find the best rate and hotel. Looking for a reasonably priced hotel near Washington DC is like finding a needle in a haystack! My best advice is if going to Washington, DC book way in advance and learn about the location you are booking in! I booked a hotel called Howard Johnson's outside of Washington, DC and way too close to Baltimore, which as some of you may recall the police violence and protesting, but I got a hotel rooms! These were fair-expensive priced rooms and with only a full sized beds, which seemed to be common when near larger cities, along with having a continental breakfast which was a must for us because it seemed to take so much time to go to a restraunt, order, and eat that it just made sense even if it was a little more money. That is definitely something to think about when going in a large group, it might be a little bit more money but the time and cost to get somewhere to eat was worth the extra bang! Since my little family of three including me shared a room with my parents, one person/couple could shower and change in the room while the other was downstairs eating. This seemed to work smoothly and most everyone was ready by no later than 9-10 am, especially because the common checkout time was 11 am.
So when we finally got to our hotel destination for the rest of the relaxing night, Howard Johnson Hotel. So my personal opinion about this particular hotel may or may not matter to you at all but I figured I would share it anyways. We had thee worst experience at this hotel through our whole trip, it was dirty, unsafe, and similar aspects of useless. I am the type of person who knows all exits and emergency plan when walking in a hotel, some say this is crazy and it very well may be but I the crazy one will not be the one to die in a fire. Well in this hotel everyone knew the fire escape/stairs because it was basically the only thing you were able to use. the elevator was so slow you could walk up and down at least 3 times before the elevator would get to the next level, and it was only a three story hotel... not good. Besides that you could only fit the luggage carrier and another person in it, and forget it in the morning when they are receiving deliveries upstairs and the elevator is constantly being used. Dirty would just be a beginning, we had bugs everywhere, stains on comforter, smoke smell, greasy/dirty phone as if a mechanic lived there and it wasn't cleaned after and last but not least the bathroom, one particular place I need to be clean (besides the bed), the toilet was clogged/backed up, used/old shampoo, vents above the shower were STUFFED full of lint,dirt, bugs, and anything else nasty that may run through ventilation. As for the similar aspects useless comments I made above the locks hardly worked (had to slam door to make sure it locked behind you), the safe in each room did not work due to assumed by manager a "low battery", they locked the back gate access to the hotel to help secure vehicles, which had no light in the parking lot to help assist in this, then they added seating outside the bottom level floor rooms which had loud people not guest of the hotel all night hanging out with the employees, who obviously were not inside working. Just everything about this entire stay was so awful that I will never stay at a Howard Johnson Hotel again. What really kicks me the most about it is that it has 4 stars and the next morning while leaving I found out how, it is part of a travel bus accommodations which adds to the stars by being noticed/used by a travel service. So needless to say it was a very big mistake to stay here. Hope that whomever reads this will consider this as a heads up.
Now that we are up and leaving, with one room refunded, we are off to Washington DC!