Ready for home and Highlights from Chicago to Indiana

I am indeed extremely road weary. The past few days I’ve been sluggish during our travels. One of the few highlights was our stop through Chicago, where we had lunch with my friend Chris, his wife Traci, and their newborn Baily. They decided to treat us to a Chicago favorite: Ed Debevic’s. I’ll let Rob explain why he and Chris got along so well and why they enjoyed more than the food.

After a laugh-filled lunch, Rob and I made our way to the Art Institute of Chicago for a couple of hours, then had a stress-filled drive trying to leave Chicago.

The confusion went something like this: “We want to take I-90E/I-94E, which really goes south, and at some point they break off and we want to follow 90.” 20 minutes go by and I’m on an iPhone looking for hotels in a small Indiana town, and I notice on my google map that we missed the 90 switchover and are still going due south instead of southeast. So arguments ensue about how to get back on track. We turn around, get on 90/94W, looking for 90E. (That’s another thing: what’s with highways in the Midwest having Interstates with 2 or more names? And why do they go N/S when they are called E/W??) Anyway. We get off the highway, and I’m scrambling to get google maps to re/-route us quickly because I can’t decipher the spaghetti mess of highways I’m staring at on my gps. We realize that we need route 55S to bring us to 90E/94E, but signage is not clear. A few turnarounds later and we’re on our way. Then, google maps did not make it clear that the 90E changeover was on the right, and is an exit.

Needless to say, we finally made it out of Chicago, and commenced paying tolls every couple of miles, even into Indiana. I’ve been tallying up the tolls and it’s actually not as bad as you’d think. Here are the states that have tolled us so far: California, Illinois and Indiana. San Francisco killed us with a $6.50 toll (which, I suppose is comparable to the Jersey Tappan Zee bridge), but Chicago and Indiana killed us with sheer number of tolls. AND-one of Indiana’s tolls didn’t even advertise how much the toll was till you approached the cashier! Really, Indiana?

Can you tell that my east coast sensibility is kicking in? We hit east coast time about an hour ago, and the New Englander in me came rolling back like no time had passed. Well, we’ll be home soon enough and I’ll no doubt be reminiscing about this vacation.

4 responses to “Ready for home and Highlights from Chicago to Indiana

  1. Back before interstate naming was solidified, when a freeway would split for a metro bypass or something similar, they would name both halves. You see it in Minneapolis as 35E and 35W. Later freeways would start 3-digit numbering so a freeway could have multiple segments. You see that also in Minneapolis as 94 as the main freeway, which branches into 394, 494, and 694 for bypasses or reroutes.

    The 90/94 mess heading through Chicago is nuts.

  2. It helps that we have 17 ways to get anywhere. Concentric circles for the win. 🙂

  3. I am glad you enjoyed Chicago, but it will be nice to see you when you get home.

    Navigating in Minneapolis is an adventure but doing it in Chicago is an extreme adventure. Life in New England is much simpler. Being small has its advantages.

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