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Posted on Saturday, July 14th, 2007

Dave!When you travel a lot, people are always attempting to solicit advice or ask questions about the places you've been. What's your favorite city you've been to? (Edinburgh, Scotland). What's the most incredible thing you've seen? (The Great Wall of China). What do you feel is the most romantic city on the planet? (Paris, France). Where is the best food you've eaten in the world? (Rome, Italy). What do you consider to be nature's most beautiful sight? (Bryce Canyon, Utah). Where did you find the friendliest people on earth? (Bali, Indonesia). What city outside the US would you most like to live in? (London, England). Where do I go to change my life? (Thailand).

And the list goes on and on. Name a place I've been to, and I've undoubtedly got some great memory of something I've seen, done, or ate there.

But, surprisingly, one of the most often-asked questions is this: "What's a place you've been to that you hate?"

I never know quite how to answer this, because I don't "hate" anything (with the possible exception of Ann Coulter, but she is evil incarnate, so that's okay). I try my best to take only the positive away from anything I might experience, and let the negative go (blogging is good for that). Which is why I have had unpleasant aspects to my travels from time to time, but I don't dwell on them so much that I end up "hating" anyplace I've been.

Except, maybe Atlanta.

Partly because I've had more bad things than good things happen to me in Atlanta, making it difficult to let go, but mostly because the traffic there is the worst I have experienced in the entire world. Los Angeles, which is widely accepted as the worst traffic city in the USA, is a piece of cake by comparison. Shanghai? Beijing? Tokyo? Paris? Rome? Seoul? They have nothing on Atlanta. Sure there are cities like Lagos in Nigeria which could rightfully claim the title, but I haven't been there, so for me it's always been Atlanta. I would rather be kicked in the balls than have to navigate Atlanta traffic... especially in the summer heat.

So guess which major American city had to be forced into to my itinerary yesterday?

Dave Travel Revised
Unfortunately, NOT a complete list of stops in the Tour de Dave 2007.


Now, I'm sure that Atlanta is a perfectly lovely city to visit on vacation or something... there's a lot to see and do there... but to have to go to Atlanta for work is absolute torture because of the f#@%ing traffic making everything miserable.

And then there's the peaches...

The last time I was in Atlanta, I decided to treat myself to some Georgia peaches after having wasted two hours in a massive traffic jam just outside the city. My hotel which had a very nice restaurant, listed peaches and cream on the menu, which only makes sense because Georgia is "The Peach State," and tourists are going to want peaches so they can experience the state properly. So I got my peaches and was eating away when my waitress dropped by for small-talk. She asked me how I was enjoying my fruit, and I replied that it was pretty good, but tasted the same as Washington peaches back home. That's when she dropped the bomb that they probably were peaches from Washington or, more likely, California... or maybe even China. Apparently Georgia peach production drops every year, because orchardists just can't compete with the imports. Much like Washington's famous apples, I suppose.


Horrendous traffic, scorching heat, and fake Georgia peaches. Now that's something to look forward to.

Categories: Travel 2007Click To It: Permalink


  1. Caroline says:

    Have just stumbled upon your site for the first time, and what should greet me but a small tirade on the city of Atlanta…. I lived there for 7 years, until last year, and completely echo the “I don’t really hate any place I’ve been… except Atlanta” sentiment.

    The funny thing is, I didn’t realize just how much I hated being there until I moved away. Now I break into a sweat at the thought of going back to visit friends.

    Anyway, just wanted to let you know that you’re not alone! Enjoyed the post, I’m going to poke around the rest of the site now.

  2. margalit says:

    I’m not a fan of Georgia in general, but Atlanta is particularly gruesome. I have a good friend that lives there, in a gorgeous house in a great neighborhood, but she’s so kowtowed by the traffic that she wants to move back to Long Island. Which is saying something!

    BTW, you have to add Boston onto your itinerary because a new Hard Rock just opened up in Quincy Market. The old one in the south end just closed and they moved it to the old Raft club. Just sayin’.

  3. RW says:

    No viable east/west egress. Too many streets named Peachtree. Revolving restaurant doesn’t go high enough. That’s a deathknell right there.

  4. Suzy says:

    OK, gotta update you on the traffic nightmare. I live in LA and honestly, bad traffic is sitting for hours in a lane waiting to move? That is NOT bad traffic. Been to Seoul, Korea and had my cab play chicken with some psycho. That is NOT bad traffic. I have a home in Paris and they drive crazy but still, NOT bad traffic.

    Bombay, (now Mumbai) India scared the living CRAP out of me. Four people on one motorcycle weaving in and out. Some were children with no helmets. Let me rephrase, there are no helmets in Mumbai because they can’t even afford rice half the time.

    On the backs of all taxis and busses is a sign that says OKAY TO HONK. And why, you ask? Because they are insane and will cut you off in a heartbeat and want to warn you in advance.

    Half the time I was in a cab going “who the hell is honking so much?” only to discover it was MY CAB!

    It’s the one city in the world I will never go back to.

  5. Bre says:

    I bet some folks eat those “Georgia Peaches” and claim they’re far superior to others because of the verdant southern orchards.

  6. Wayne says:

    I agree. Even the airport was horrible. I spent a week and a half working for Delta Technologies (the IT dept of Delta airlines) and while the people were nice and the work was fun, the city, airport, hotel and everything just didn’t cut it for me. Easily my most disagreeable visit.

  7. Val says:

    Hi, first time comment…came to your site via Mocha Mamma and because I’m originally from Wenatchee. I love your style of writting and enjoy hearing about the valley….and here is a bit of irony….I just moved to Atlanta 3 days ago…..Hope I don’t hate it as much as you!!!
    Although the house I rented has a heat pump that apparently doesn’t work.

    Great blog, keep up the good work


  8. Bec says:

    Big up the UK right there – so does this mean we will eventually get one of the US’s greatest people ever living over here? Because that would rock a considerable amount…

    Actually knowing my luck you’d move over here at the same time I manage to get my arse into the US! 🙂

  9. Robin says:

    I don’t like Atlanta either. The city or the airport. About a month ago, my flight got rerouted through Atlanta. I almost missed my connecting flight (the last flight out to Newark that night). The thought of having to spend the night in Atlanta started to give me hives. Fortunately the connecting flight was delayed as well.

  10. bogup says:

    Ah, Atlanta. The end of the “march to the sea.” Too hot, “too northern” for a “southern city” and too, too. Even the airport as a transfer point to other destinations is too. And the worst part is that it is the home to Delta.
    Prefer Augusta and other smaller cities or the smaller towns in eastern GA. Nicer people and better environs.
    Considering all of the other interesting and nice places you are visiting you can put this in the Purgatory category.

  11. You are absolutely correct about Atlanta. We lived there for four years before moving to Singapore. We still own our house there, but I honestly dread moving back because of the traffic. The airport is actually not so bad, it’s just that we always had to give ourselves an hour and a half to get there (a 45 minute drive without traffic) because there might be BAD TRAFFIC. Then, we had to contend with the long ass lines for security. Driving I-75/85 is absolutely terrifying! The semis are out to KILL people. I’ve lived in LA, Chicago, and New York, and none of them are as bad as ATL. At least there are nice people there 🙂

  12. Avitable says:

    I thought Davelando was in December now?

  13. Yeah, all the money in the world would not be enough for me to live in Atlanta. The traffic alone would be enough to make it not worth my while.

    No way you could make it Charlotte instead? Less traffic and an all-together better city (of course, I could be partial). Or if you just MUST stay in the state of Georgia (poor guy), how about Savannah? Good food there and it’s a very pretty town.

    No? Well, drat…just trying to help.

  14. Tobi says:

    Ever since the Braves played the Blue Jays in the ’92 world series I’ve had a thing against Atlanta. Call it friendly rivalry or whatever, but the newspapers were jackasses about my Jays. Luckily, we kicked their asses. Take THAT Atlanta!

  15. Liz says:

    Ouch! You have a lot of Atlanta-haters for readers! As a true native Atlantan (we’re a rare breed these days), I’ll agree with you on the traffic, but the city is wonderful, is growing in a mostly good way, and just has so much to offer. I can’t wait to go back and live there next year. Sorry about your peach experience, it’s true that real GA peaches are hard to come by in the grocery store, but go to a farmer’s market or a roadside stand and you’ll get the real thing. I wish you’d had a better experience, your little Atlanta devil makes me sad 🙁

  16. Dave2 says:

    As I said, I’m sure that Atlanta is a lovely city for vacation… or even to live there, I guess… and there’s a lot there to see and do. But to go there for work is a horrible prospect to me because navigating the traffic in the area is positively miserable.

    I can sympathize with the Georgia peach, because the Washington apple is in the same predicament. 🙁

  17. kilax says:

    Now I feel guilty for asking you about Copenhagen last December 🙁 People ask you because you have great insight! 🙂

  18. Dave2 says:

    But I don’t mind at all when people ask me about my travels!

  19. ChillyWilly says:

    I’m going to have to disagree with you on Atlanta, but only because I’ve never had to drive there. I’ve taken Marta pretty much every where I went, with the expection of Buckhead, which we took a cab to.

    Since my first visit there in 1994, I’ve not minded going to Atlanta. I was there 6 times in 1998 and 4 times in 1999 (all business) and each time, I took Marta from the airport to the hotel to downtown and to various other places there.

    Buckhead was a favorite place to go, mostly for the cool clubs and bars they have there.

    But one place we do agree upon that we’ve both been to is Bryce Canyon, Utah. Incredible is the one word that describes that place. And I never tire of going there. Also, Goblin Valley (middle of the state) is pretty cool, too. Grand Staircase Escalante is great to drive through.

    Anyway, I hope someday to visit some of the places in the world you’ve been to.

  20. Beth says:

    HEY NOW – I’m a born and bred Georgia Peach!! You people are steppin’ on my toes!! I’ll admit the traffic is BAD, but I’m a suburban mom so I can avoid it. Too bad you’ll be working, we could have gone to Chicken and Waffles! BTW, the Dave shirts I ordered are being worn proudly here in ATL…

  21. Dan says:

    Ah, well, there is MARTA, and there is the Flying Biscuit for breakfast, and the fact that all the women wear skimpy outfits. I had dinner at this Spanish restaurant, outside, surrounding by skimpy tops. It was great. I even walked there.

    Not that I’m necessarily rushing to head back.

  22. yellojkt says:

    South Carolina grows WAY more peaches than Georgia. They are very proud/sensitive about that.

  23. kapgar says:

    I would like to note how proud I am that the only one of your travel badges in which you smile is Chicago! Go Chi-town!!!!

  24. timothy says:

    I really like Georgia, and I’ve always enjoyed Atlanta. I’ve not driven in the city too much. I once had to drive a 15 passenger van around the city. I hate driving in general.

    Forget the peaches. Try sweet potato cheesecake at Gladys Knights Chicken and Waffles.

  25. Karl says:

    Yay! DaveLando is coming!

  26. y not i says:

    Another native Atlantan here (& lifelong Georgian)! Seeing so many haters commenting here makes me kind of sad as well, though I have to agree about the traffic. It sucks when you basically have to plan your entire day around traffic patterns. We’ve been out of the city for 7 years and it just keeps getting worse each time we go back. Other than traffic, though, I love Atlanta. I hope you get a chance to go there for a non-work visit at some point.

  27. hawaii_all_inclusive_resorts says:

    I have to say that any place that has monstrous traffic is a bad place for me. I agree, Los Angeles is bad.

    Every time I travel, I try to make sure there is efficient public transportation; I have a hard time accepting the fact that I am spending all that money to spend time sitting in a traffic zone.

    This being said, all the places that I have visited have their charm. I come back always a bit nostalgic from everywhere I have been, despite the frustrations that I might have experienced.

    Traveling is like a relationship; when you love it, you deal with all what comes with it.

  28. karla says:

    I love Savannah Georgia and the bits along the coast. Atlanta? I only ever drive AROUND it.

    My unfavorite place is Orlando. I don’t like Disney., I don’t like Universal, I don’t like manufactured park holiday places and I hate the traffic there. There is no scenery (I’m a mountain and history gal) that interests me. The only good thing is the shopping, but i can do that anywhere.

    Orlando? Orlandon’t.

  29. Peace says:

    When we were in Atlanta a while back we discovered a great restaurant Soul Vegetarian. I highly recommend it. They have other locations too, it is run by a religious group, and they have great food. I had something resembling fish sticks with tartar sauce, my DH had bbq ribs. Sooooooooo good.

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