Jack’s guest blog post this week – and our apologies. We meant to put this up last night!
Our first day on the road started out in beautiful wall-to-wall sunshine all the way through Kentucky and over into Indiana and Illinois. But then we ran into one of the worst storms I’ve ever driven through and we were forced to pull over as I couldn’t see a thing even with the wipers on full speed. We continued to run into sporadic storms all the way to our first hotel in downtown Galesburg (the birthplace of Carl Sandburg).
The hotel was gloriously seedy with just about everything either grubby or broken, but it was situated on one side of an impressive town square right opposite a lovely old cathedral style church, and the bed was clean and comfortable. A passing train woke me at 3 am – ‘right on time’ I thought!
Today we visited Carl Sandburg’s birthplace having checked in advance that it would be open. But when we arrived we found that, sadly, it wasn’t. Instead we strolled through the garden and checked out his double seater privy – I think he would have approved.
We decided to take the mostly scenic route to Sioux Falls, South Dakota by heading south to pick up Route 2 across Iowa on the Historic Hills Trail. It wove through beautiful little towns and endless fields of corn until we got to the Lewis and Clark trail. We assumed that this would be equally scenic, but discovered that, in fact, it was Interstate 29. We decided that L and C had it pretty easy on that part of their journey at least. Lots of amenities.
When we finally crossed into South Dakota the first thing we saw was a sign saying “Eat steak, wear fur and own guns – it’s the American way”; I felt right at home. The next thing I saw was a speed limit sign saying ‘80’ – it feels right scary to drive at 85 mph when you’re used to 75.
Now we’re firmly ensconced in a somewhat more upmarket hotel in downtown Sioux Falls and right next to an old center that is reminiscent of Asheville – I even just saw a pedaling singing bar go past. Tomorrow we will walk the sculpture garden, visit The Falls, and indulge Wendy’s taste for Middle Eastern Food. It’s the American way.