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Monday, September 1

the longest road

When planning this year's road trip, I looked at options. We usually take 80 or 90, endless miles of black ribbon hinting at the world beyond but never revealing anything of substance. How boring, I said, let's take a different road. Rte 20 goes right into our destination city, Corvallis Oregon. How cool it would be to take one road all the way across the country. A road that actually goes through towns. We could see how America lives, I gushed. We had driven Rte 66 once, from Chicago to California. That was wonderful.This would be even better. It starts sooner!

I googled and read blogs and learned that there are many who feel as I do. I read of a couple in their 70's who did the road on a motorcycle. America's longest road. They gushed and rhapsodized, too.

So, we started out, feeling relaxed and happy. We went through little towns, Americana. Flags fluttered behind white picket fences, Bridges lined with pots of flowers. Funky restaurants with names like "Beef, Beer and Breakfast" and one I though was "Liver Twist" until I realized the huge green olive with a cocktail pick through it was meant to be an "O".

Once we wound up on a dead end street and more than once we lost the route and had to ask people how to get back on. Usually they tried to gently convince us to "get on the 90", but we persevered. We were having fun. We were adventurers, damnit!

Then we got to Cleveland and realized it had taken 7 1/2 hours. It should take 3. We got on the 90.

So,. we did not get across the Mississippi on Day one as Russell hoped. We are in a lovely motel in Elkhart, Indiana watching the Hurricane news on CNN. People on the road. A road with only one direction: out of here. Leaving not their cares behind, but their lives. Hoping for the best, but knowing the worst. That has to be the longest road. The one with question marks at each end.

So we gear up for day 2. Max called from the lobby saying "breakfast is crazy here! Waffles, biscuits and gravy!" I tell him to fill up, the old folks need more time to wake up.

ANd on we go.

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