Illinoise from Michigan
August 08, 2002 GMT


Anyone would think riding dragonfly 1,700 miles would have satisfied my travel needs. But I hopped on my bike to travel to Illinois to see my sister, round trip 900 miles. First Day the weather was perfect.

In Indiana they have yellow(cautionary)signs letting you know when you'll be driving by a church. And those signs brought a church to my attention that was "drive in theater" with worship services while you sit in your car. I thought going to one of thier potlucks would be carry out.

I loved the simpleness of the Amish country
and seeing so many buggies. The back roads in Amish country means horses and and simple beauty.

Rode through a town that was pretty small and posted 63 residents.
riding through rural towns left me thinking about how where we live effects who we are.

Next day's drive brought me a part of America where the library has more farm magazine glamore or travel magazine. Where the flags flying are the proud red, white and blue at every 3rd home or farm. sober thoughts afterriding pass a home that had a gold star in the window. Numerous farmers on tractors plowing the fields that will be the food you and I eat.

Methodist churches either are more numerous or they
are better about putting their signs at the towns borders.

You know which states require helmets as soon as you've seen a few riders. I have
found I like the freedom of choosing whether I'll wear a helmet or not. At first I rode with my
hair flying but after riding awhile I settled into wearing my helmet by choice.

As I traveled through Illinois I recognized that signs
proclaiming Hog market meant pigs and not Harley Davidson.

Illinoise has areas where the land is so flat you can look in different
directions and see for miles. And crossing a bridge over the hwy is the highest elevation for miles.
Suddenly you arrive where the land changes into rivers, woods and variety of scenery. After riding hours through flatness I felt gladness in riding up hills and around curves.

My daughter was worried that once I got on my bike and
headed out that I might continue and take weeks, months to return. The
truth of the matter once I started riding the road becomes so enticing
and the folks are so kind, the scenery changes, and I begin to feel the
desire to learn even more about who and what makes up our country.

The very same roads I traveled by car become a new environment where
folks interact,the land is different and more interesting.
I enjoyed my sister's
familywith the normal activities and children's events. Norman Rockwell's middle America where an outing means knowing your neighbors.

My return trip was so cold the morning I left and knew I was crazy. I need to buy a car and ride in comfort.. But then the weather warmed up and I was gald to be riding free and independent.

Back roads, friendly folks, different views,the travel was marvelous.
Began to get the motorcycle addiction, I didn't want to get off the
bike. Called my daughter and told her I was going the entire trip back and
she told me not to be a fool. Luckily I listened and stopped for the
night a hundred miles from where I am temporarily living in Ann Arbor.
The reward came the next morning when I got up and rode to my heart's
content(more than the 100 ,miles needed) through beautiful towns and
enjoyable sites.

Posted by Diane Bogenrieder at 05:23 PM GMT

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