Monday, September 3, 2012

Travellog: Illinois to Ohio

bridge. hashtag dirty windshild
On the way back to our hotel after spending a wonderfully simple afternoon in Nauvoo things got a little less simple. We were winding along the banks of the Mississippi when the "Check Engine" light flicked on.


Over 1000 miles from home.

We called the nearest dealership when we got settled back at our hotel and made an appointment to take the car in first thing the next morning. We waited while they did the diagnostic test. I read Architectural Digest with Ada sleeping on my lap until enough clanky doors and sounds of strange shoes clacking past woke her up. Then all of our energy was spent entertaining her at the lego table when all she really wanted to do was steal other patrons' iPads.

The test came back a little over an hour later. It wasn't anything serious and we were on our way shortly after that. As it turns out, 300 miles down the road and a fresh tank of gas later, light turned off.

By the time we hit Illinois things were sailing along. I got to live out a life long dream of listening to  Come On Feel the Illinoise! while driving through the state. As a bonus, Sufjan's soft beat kept Ada sleeping for her longest nap on the trip. We must have listened to half a dozen albums all the way through.

We passed lots of trains and lots and lots of fields. A corn field higher than the fence posts was still a rarity, but the fields were every bit as expansive and vast as I had imagined. Every time I saw a train I thought about talking to Mike's grandma about her experience driving cross country. One of the trips she was pregnant and had a small child so she flew while her husband drove the car. She told him to be safe. He promised he would, though he admitted later that he caught himself several times racing the trains as they sped past.

There were parts on the drive where the countryside truly rolled. It wasn't punctuated with formations or marred with rocks. Just smooth. Just spreading out on either side of us like carpet.

We hurried to Ohio where we spent the evening with friends. We ate sushi and udon at a nearby Japanese place. Ada was a huge fan of soy sauce and it made me realize she had never tasted it before. Oh to be 1 again and be constantly thrilled by new tastes and sounds and sights.

After putting the babes to bed, we sat upstairs while Mike and his buddy relived hilarious annecdotes from high school and college and the four of us downed a few pints of Jeni's ice cream before heading to bed. Our last night on felt at once sad and exciting. I loved road-tripping. It was such a unique experience. Plus, I got to hold Mike's hand for hours on end.

1 comment:

Copper (Annalisa) said...

I should have told you to wave to Kemsley as you passed through Indiana! Well, I imagine you went through Indy, so you would have only been 90 minutes south of her... she would have seen that wave ;)

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