Leaving Clyde, Ohio, was a bittersweet. Although the town was clearly on the decline, there was something very likable, very American about it. The sky was overcast until 9 a.m. when the clouds dissipated, freeing the sun from any obstruction for the rest of the day.
We drove northwest through Perrysburg, Ohio, another prototypical American small town, to Toledo. We stopped in a used bookstore, and the owner told Kyle and I about how the woman who wrote all the Nancy Drew mysteries, Mildred Benson, was a native of the city. The bookstore owner had a few antique copies of her books autographed. When I went back a few years later, the store was closed.
Following U.S. Route 20, we eventually made our way into Indiana, where the drive was peaceful and relaxing. Our first stop was in Angola, where Kyle and I visited a CD store.
After driving past a menacing nuclear power plant in Michigan City, we hit traffic in the Hell-On-Earth city known as Gary, Indiana. I would rather live permanently in Iraq before ever going through, driving by, Gary, Indiana. We were caught in traffic until we were able to drive off an exit ramp into the edge of Chicago, Illinois, where Kyle and I checked into a Days Inn and then filled ourselves up in Greektown. It was an early night for us ’cause we both knew we wanted to experience the city when the workday began.