I survived it, barely
Let it be said: getting up at 3:00 am to drive into Manhattan for work assignments at 4:45 am is not pleasant by even the most extreme stretch of that adjective. Humans are not meant to get up at such a ghastly hour. Although my agricultural knowledge is rather limited, I do not believe that even dairy farmers have to get up so early to milk the cows. I have no doubt that it would be possible to get used to rising at 3 on a regular basis, we can adapt to most things, but it would take time and be an unpleasant process. Doing it just for two days is of course far too short for any adaptations to occur.
Lest I sound too negative, I must concede that there was one good aspect about traveling at this hour, namely the traffic situation. It would be an exaggeration to say that the roads were empty, in fact there was more traffic than I would have expected, but it was never heavy enough for there to be any sort of delays. On Monday, I took the Long Island Expressway to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway to the Williamsburgh Bridge, while on Tuesday I went to a location in Midtown using the Queensboro* Bridge. Each day the trip took barely 90 minutes. Had I made the same journey starting out a couple of hours later, I would imagine that each drive would have been at least an hour longer.
Actually, now that I think of it, there were two more good aspects about traveling at this horrendous hour. I was able to find on-street parking, which would have been impossible at a later hour. On Monday I parked on Elizabeth Street just south of Broome, and on Tuesday on West 66th about midway between Amsterdam and West End avenues. I also was done in the very early afternoon each day, which made for reasonably quick trips home (though a truck fire on the Expressway near my exit led to some delays on Tuesday). Even so, these two days were classic cases in which the negatives outweighed the positives. At least they’re not likely to recur very often.
* = mindful of the criticism it got for abandoning the old name when it renamed the Triboro Bridge the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge, the city now calls the Queensboro Bridge the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge, in other words the old name is still retained.