You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
The Natural Bridge in Kentucky was a wonder, but we still have to get up to the Wisconsin Northwoods
(12 June 2021).
For some years of traveling in the US, we've been searching out La Quinta -- authentically 'pet friendly' (not 'pet friendly' with a $50 surcharge per friendly pet) and inexpensive -- but not all La Quintas are the same. Our stop a few nights ago in Elkview was one of the worst, but this one is certainly one of the best. It's in 'Kokomo', said to be in Indiana, and was renovated four years ago.
The atrium-ish entrance and . . .
. . . the reception desk, overlooked by a looming decoration that seems random until we discover (on Wikipedia) that Kokomo is known as a centre of early automotive innovations, such as the Haynes internal combustion auto from 1894, in mass production from 1898.
Kokomo is also fabled as a magnet for tornadoes in modern times, and for the allegedly largest Ku Klux Klan rally in history, in 1923. Isn't this a welcoming setting? The complimentary breakfast area is in the background.
It appears that we've got everything we need out of the car now.
The room's almost large enough to practice our down-and-out pass patterns.
The cats are exiting their carrier and already feeling at home.
Settling in for the evening
But it's time for dinner -- we have to go out for a while.
And now we're back.
Next day, all packed in and ready to head north. Turn on the A/C, it was in the 90s°F yesterday.
(-- Climate change is a commie hoax.) [-- What's a 'commie'? -- Erm, like a Nazi!]
Melvin sleeps all through every trip; Choupette normally squawks for a while, but eventually relents and snoozes too.
An Elevated Railroad; maybe we're nearing Chicago.
One has flown in and out of O'Hare Airport countless times (in the 1960s) to Midwestern destinations, but has never set foot in the city itself. Until now, though that's apparently going to be out in a less skyscrapery area north of the downtown. We'll see.
That's Soldier Field, according to the eligible voters in this car.
That's certainly skyscrapery. How courageous those people must be, trying to process their forms and reports every day up on the 820th floor of some building that you've been assured has recently been inspected.
A view of Lake Michigan, with the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel. We'll have to come back for that.
We're plunging along the lakeside farther north, to nearly as far as you can go in Chicago without actually being in Evanston.
To Emily's and Clinton's and Hazel's new condo (top floor)
Emily and Kristin (and the unobtrusive photographer) are out for a recce in the leafy neighborhood.
And now for a curbside lunch at the charming Charmers Café.
Kristin and Emily catching up on recent times at the Charmers Café
And having a look round, near an umbrella advertising a brewery in Munich
There's the train -- this is said to be the last stop on the city line into the downtown, though other trains carry on northward to Milwaukee, etc.
So who was 'Blanche de Chambly'? (Blanche liked wheat ales from Chambly in Belgium; what a babe.)
The Emil Bach House on N. Sheridan Rd., Frank Lloyd Wright, 1915
Some medieval cathedral jocularity right here in Chicago, USA
A courtyard in the same complex as the jocular telamons above
Three hundred meters east of Emily's and Clinton's new condo . . .
. . . there is the Fargo Beach Park, with breakwaters.
And a welcome cooling breeze off the lake
Melvin has retired into radical shyness and preferred to hide in the back room for the length of our visit.
Dinner at the Peckish Pig (no relation)
A crowded patio but plenty of room to spread out in here, with the baseball game on telly.
All the cats (except for Melvin) assembled for review: Choupette, unmistakable in the foreground; Pugsley the valiant with Kristin; and gentle Wednesday hiding up on the cat-tower out of everyone's way. Clinton seen in the mirror-wall.
Choupette contemplating the rapidly changing venues during our week on the road.
Wednesday, seldom entirely convinced that it's safe to come down . . .
. . . or to come out from behind the antique cradle.
But soon it's time to forsake Chicago (which will not notice) and count the obligatory patriotic flaggy extravaganzas on the highways to the Wisconsin Northwoods. 14 June 2021.
Like this classic expression of right-thinking commitment to a cause, or causes, off I41/I94 passing Kenosha, Wisconsin. We checked it out on Google Maps and the proud flaggy symbol is clearly flapping in the breeze (though the wind was blowing in the opposite direction on map/photo day).
Like so. From a satellite!