Observations on the road

Today my work took me to Rockford, the driving tour. If you don’t know Rockford, it’s a town in Illinois up the rock river a bit.

As we began our journey north-ish.. I was in the passenger seat, hilarious to those of you who know me, but I am trying to overcome my demons.. Being a passenger is one. This driver I have traveled with a few times and my comfort level is good. Mostly because he is a talker. I believe this distracts me from the perils of highway travel and not being in control of the wheel.

This journey was partially on the highway partially on the route know as 2, I think. I wasn’t driving and therefore, lack retention power.

Anyway as we approached Dixon, we turned off for the scenic portion of the journey. As we drove through Dixon, I couldn’t help but comment on the beautiful homes including the boyhood home of Ronald Reagan, more on that later.  As we drove through Dixon we were welcomed by the simple archway across the main road, simply proclaiming “Dixon” and since 1919 has welcomed and silently honored veterans by lighting the way.

Turning right just past the archway and continue our drive towards Rockford. I am happy we chose this alternate route and the country has it’s own type of beauty, the kind that makes you image pioneers forging through and making camp at some point along the frozen river. as we round the river, it is a display of frozen wonder, the ice intentionally broken up to help prevent flooding and yet the main channel of the river looks like glass. It seems to beckon to the spirit of yesteryear, I expected to see ice skaters appear at any moment.

As we reach the city limits of Oregon, I am charmed by a Root beer drive in named Sam’s, and the charming town square seemingly untouched by time. As we drive through another river town, I am never short on admiration for it’s quaintness. As we exit Oregon, more beautiful countryside and as we approach Lowden, I see him. Quietly standing guard of the bluffs of the river, stately and compelling, Chief Black Hawk, forever guarding the river. As I look closer I note that he is sheathed in a tarp, perhaps an odd winter coat to preserve the statue. I discover that it is an unfinished restoration project, currently waiting a new contractor to resume the endeavor and return the Chief to his well earned grandeur.

As we pass through Oregon we see restaurants with names like the Snake Pit and Maxons Riverside as well as make note of abandoned businesses like the Silo Antiques ( I just loved this building!) that at a minimum beg a story, if not a full fledged adventure.

Finally we reach our destination, the Rockford/Chicago Airport, upon entering the airport I am greeted by a large poster/sign, welcoming me to the home of Cheap Trick, 2016 Hall of Fame inductees. That image transports me back to 1978 and my first concert, Rockford Speedway, age 17. A lifetime, but yet only minute ago.

Should you have the time or believe in the therapy of a Sunday Drive, this is a good one.

until next time,







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