I spent most of my day wondering how the firm intended to get us wayward Manhattanites home after they got us to the office this morning. Around 4 PM I got the e-mail saying that the first shuttle buses were leaving at 4:30 and the next ones at 7 PM. I got my boss to let me leave at 4:30, promising him that I'd work from home when I got there. I grabbed my stuff and hustled out the door to the designated waiting area on Broadway. But no one told me or the other few commuters that they'd moved the vans around the corner to Liberty St. Luckily I noticed one of the firm's office managers directing people to the vans and found the right one for my neighborhood. I had been chatting with one of my co-workers who also lives near me, and he and I squeezed into the back seat of the SUV, with a few other people already waiting to leave. We sat until 5:15 and then finally pulled away for what turned out to be a two-hour ride home. We took 3rd Avenue all the way north, and it was stop-and-go, but mostly stop, until we passed the Queensborough Bridge at 59th St. After that, it was a breeze, but getting to that point sucked. I was tired, starving, my left leg was cramping up, and all I wanted to do was get home. I walked in the door about 7:20, and we went right back out to Pizzeria Uno for dinner. I hadn't planned to go there for my birthday dinner, but when I saw on my walk home from the van that it was open I figured why the hell not. (In an odd coincidence, Liz and I had had dinner at a Pizzeria Uno in Washington, DC's Union Station exactly 10 years ago on my 22nd birthday.) It was the tastiest suburban restaurant food I'd had in a long time. Finally, I came home for good around 9 PM. I got to open a few birthday cards and presents (Master and Commander on DVD [I know it came out two years ago] and the deluxe edition of Who's Next) and try to get a little work done.
Now it's 12:30 AM and I have to decide what I'm doing tomorrow. I would dearly love to work from home, but I think I'll end up taking the shuttle van service again. The good thing is that I only have to do it for two more days, then I start my vacation and I can worry about walking to Penn Station on Saturday to catch my train.