Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Vermillion Ohio to Burlington Iowa

The plan from Vermilion was to head straight west on I-80 and make up some of the time we lost wandering and looking for tires. Then I saw the morning weather forecast calling for severe storms around I-80 west of Chicago. The back roads were our favourite anyway so we took 2 to Sandusky and headed southwest on US 6. Before Indiana, we caught US 24 and headed due west through Fort Wayne. The two lanes only had light traffic so we made good time.

In Illinois, we got some raindrops and put on the gear again. That was it for the rain, but the decision to go south was a good one because we could see major ugly weather to the north. Crossing into the Central Time Zone gave us an extra hour to ride.

About an hour out of Peoria, on the two-lane, we come upon a slow moving line of traffic. As soon as I saw a clear spot, and on a dotted line, I started passing them. As I went by a tanker and needed to pull in, I saw he was only about eight feet off the back of the van in front of him. I signaled and pulled in expecting him to give a little bit of ground. He did but laid on the air horn. This caused me to turn on the CB and ask him just what his problem was. He started ranting about motorcycles cutting through traffic and said he would run me down if I did it again. I asked him who the bigger threat was, me passing in a clear spot on a legal dotted line or him tailgating a line of traffic with 80,000 pounds of truck under him. Then I shut off the radio, passed the rest of the line and was gone.

We caught I-74 from Peoria to Galesburg after finding the on ramp in a mess of construction. The ride up 74 skirted one rain storm with the rest of the sky clearing. In Galesburg, we took US 34 to Burlington Iowa on the bank of the Mississippi River. There we found the Arrowhead Inn, an interesting place with slate floors in the rooms and huge fish in tanks in the lobby. The owner told me about a local plan to build a man made lake to float a riverboat casino in. Interesting.

Supper was club sandwiches ordered from Aunt Bea’s Restaurant. They were huge and they were delicious. It took me all evening to eat mine as I worked at catching up the Blog entries and watched the thunderstorms roll in. I don’t mind them nearly as much when I am under a roof. The Weather Channel was predicting serious storms north of I-80, so the southern strategy appeared to be the correct one.

No comments: