Monday, August 08, 2016

A Day's Drive Up US 19, Perhaps

Just saying again: Having a solidly conservative state like Georgia showing signs of flipping to Hillary Clinton in the Presidential election - even with Johnson and Stein in the equation - gives me a warm feeling.

Although I've lived almost my entire life - 39 years of it - in the crazy hazy Sunshine State, Georgia remains in my heart as the state of my birth.

With Dad serving as a US Navy pilot at the time, the family was stationed in Albany when me and my twin brother were born. Mom keeps remembering the doctors were talking about a football game during the labor, which didn't make sense for May, unless it was a spring practice or something. Still, it's the little details that stand out...

I'm in the mood to go visit the old homestead. I haven't been there since the family moved in 1974 for a brief stay in Virginia Beach before Dad retired in 1976 and we relocated for the most part to the Florida Gulf Coast. I've been on a lot of road trips through Georgia but was always passing through - to DC/Maryland many times to visit Dad's family, and up along the interstates on a major road trip from South Florida to Chicago for an ALA convention in 2000 - and never with a proper time to swing through Albany (being a little out of the way in the corner of Southwest Georgia).

But hey, it's a straight ride up US 19 - ah, to start the trip in Palm Harbor! - and the maps say it'll take five-and-a-half hours, which is half a business day and leaves maybe an hour or two of circling the Pokestops before driving home (unless I take the step of checking into a hotel and staying for a full day).

'Course, my budget is insanely tight. I can barely afford a day of doing a comic-con (at $40 a ticket and extra for buying birthday gifts. Driving up is going to consume gas more than two stops, three meals a day unless I pack a lot of stuff into coolers but then the temptation to eat someplace local and colorful will be paramount, the hotel is probably going to set me back $70 or so for something decent with a sit-down bathtub...

Sigh. One of these days I gotta win a lotto or something.


Infidel753 said...

TPM has some good analysis on this.

With a uniquely-disastrous Republican nominee, and Johnson and now this Egg McMuffin guy likely to peel off noticeable slivers of the wingnut vote, we could see Hillary win some surprising states, even if only by a plurality. But Georgia might be headed for permanent swing-state status. It has something most deep-South states don't have -- a big city, with the more cosmopolitan voters that implies. Maybe in ten years we'll think of it like Florida and Virginia, not really part of "the South" any more despite its location.

Paul Wartenberg said...

Georgia has been on the cusp of flipping for years: Atlanta as a massive business center is akin to a giant black hole sucking all other Southern metros - Charlotte, Birmingham, even Jacksonville and Tampa/Orlando - towards its pull. But the big deal is the demographic shift for the entire state: a lot of African-American communities of course, but also a growing Hispanic population. The increase in college-educated voters is part of the shift.

It's still a socially conservative state, and all it will take is one fake outrage towards Hillary to lose that polling spike, but if that spike turns into a plateau and keeps going into late October, I will be thrilled.

Paul Wartenberg said...

As for a road trip to Albany, an overnight stay would be at least $75 for a single person, on average about $115 among the hotel chains. Factor in $8 + $12 + $25 for three meals a day, gas at $2 or so per gallon, any additional costs if I spend on touristy things (you never know), and emergency money... I'm looking at $300 for a weekend trip at best. I think.

And good God, my budget can't handle that.