I lived much of my first quarter-century in what I learned to call The Midwest. (The term ‘The Midwest’ for this region might be a carryover from the days when Missouri was ‘The West’.) I grew up in Michigan, went to school in Ohio, and lived for a while in Chicago. Somehow, living in those three states, I have a bias against Indiana. Despite the fact that Indiana has some excellent universities and a rich manufacturing history, to me it always seemed to be dull and perhaps a little backward.
So I am always a little surprised when I go through Indiana and discover something beautiful or wonderful. But not this trip.
We wound our way on back roads, from Louisville to the high ground (Terre Haute). It was nice to get off the highway, but there are a lot of very small towns through that area. Despite the plentiful redbuds livening the yards and the almost-bare woods, the area we went through seemed to be where a lot of anger at the system comes from. Was it just my imagination, or are these the people working harder but not doing as well? It didn’t look poverty-stricken, but it didn’t look like it was doing that well, either.
We got on Interstate 70 at Terre Haute and headed west to Illinois. Illinois has a better feel to it for me. I don’t know why.
We discovered that the Tesla charger in St Charles MO, near St Louis, is not working as it should. We called Tesla to find out what we could. They advised us to charge up as much as we could before leaving the charger in Effingham IL. We sat in a Wendy’s and did the crossword puzzle. Andrea read while I obsessed about whether we would be able to make it to the charger beyond St Charles: Columbia MO. We could probably make it, but one reason we came this way was to visit a friend in St Louis, which would take us out of the direct path. We considered options all the way to our motel. While I drove carefully to conserve power, Andrea called Tesla again. They gave us some alternative charging stations that would be slower but would help us make it to Columbia.
We explained our predicament to the motel desk clerk. She let us plug into their household current overnight. It won’t add a lot of miles to our range, but it will help. There are no restaurants in the area, so we’ve ordered Chinese delivery. Andrea is very good, letting me get as anxious as I want without buying into it herself. Bless her.
Sunday, April 17, 2016