The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Opinion I tried, D.C. I tried to go to work.

Commuters drive east on Interstate 66 near Vienna on Sept. 16 as heavy rush-hour traffic volume rebounds from the pandemic. (Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post)

I now work in my office twice a week. I have tried four times to adhere to this schedule and each time have failed. I live six miles from my office and a 12-minute walk from the Metro. On Tuesday, I had 65 minutes for my commute and knew I would never make it. The Metro wait times still stretch to 15 minutes during rush hour. And I transfer.

I instead drove. E-ZPass required $18.75 to drive 2.1 miles along Interstate 66 and save seven minutes from my commute. Nope. I took a free route and found a parking space, double-checking the signs for any illegality. A ParkMobile sign told me to “check the sign for the number.” Useful, if there were any signs. None. The app showed the zone. I entered the zone, and the app required no further codes. I believed I safely parked.

Two hours later, I went to move my car and found a $50 parking ticket because I paid for the zone but did not enter the space number. Which does not exist.

Why is D.C. making it so hard for me to work in the city? Why would I bother? I lost an hour, I lost money, and I feel as though I’m losing my mind. I am ready to return to 100 percent telework. D.C. says it wants us back, but instead, it pushes us away.

Laura LoGerfo, Arlington