Wednesday, July 5, 2017

OTBR: Illinois Farm Land

Latitude: N 42° 06.870
Longitude: W 088° 31.524

A child on a road trip with his family asks, "Where are we?" and the father answers, "Let's check the map. We're off the blue roads [the Interstate Highways marked in blue on the road atlas]. We're off the red roads [the US and state highways]. We're off the black roads [the county highways]. I think we're off the map altogether." It was always my dream to be off the map altogether.

After the jump, a few of the random places (and I mean random literally) that I visited vicariously (not actually) last month that are "off the blue roads".

  • in Illinois, on open farm land as far as the eye can see
  • in Pennsylvania, uphill steeply about 100 meters off a narrow dirt road lined with mountain laurel on both sides, in full bloom and very pretty
  • past two Direct TV satellite dishes, at the edge of the wood line, behind some apartments south of Baltimore
  • in the District of Columbia, inside the walls of the now-closed Fletcher Johnson Middle School, a dull, institutional-looking, concrete and brick facility
  • in Adel, Iowa, in front of a brown ranch style house lined with yellow lilies
  • in Merrillville, Indiana, in a field with tall grasses in a neighborhood of neatly kept houses south of the grueling drive on the Interstate around Chicago
  • just off the road in the heavily wooded Fisher Oak Savanna Nature Preserve in central Indiana
  • in an open area of sandy soil and scrubby bushes off US 95 near Nevada's Alien Travel Center
  • near a shack in very hilly and densely wooded area of eastern Ohio close to a large dammed lake and lots of vacation homes
  • back in dense woods well off a twisty narrow mountain road with no place to stop in a rural area outside of Pittsburgh
  • in the woods behind a two story white clapboard house with a gray mansard roof in Connecticut
  • in Massachusetts just across the state line from Rhode Island, in dense woods behind the store, Lost Treasures Antiques, which is going out of business
  • in a huge paddock containing about 500 sheep west of Melbourne
  • in the desert on Furnace Creek Road in the southern California desert near Death Valley
  • in Illinois east of St. Louis, in a field of corn past a Schnuck's grocery store and a Walmart and a Comfort Innn
  • in a cornfield (20 cm high) west of Sleepy Eye, Minnesota
  • in upstate New York, deep in a wooded area across from a red barn and corn growing that is only 6" high ("Well the rain has resumed and we've seen some raging streams along our dash path.")
  • on one of the major streets in Fremont, California, near a field full of corn ready for harvest ("not exactly something I often see here in the Bay Area")
  • off in the woods close to Sebago Lake in Maine, across the road from an area fenced by cyclone fencing with posted signs saying "absolutely no trespassing" and video surveillance
  • in the Arizona desert, in low scrub on both sides of the road and cotton fields just to the west ("It was very, very hot outside")
  • out of reach on the Devil's Ridge Golf Course east of Flint, Michigan
  • in Maine, among grassy fields with many large boulders collected in piles or rows, some even stacked (a new extreme east visit for USA)
  • inside a house in Toronto whose driveway is on Tottenham Rd., but whose front door faces Marshfield Court, the short cul-de-sac to the north
  • in dense knee-high ferns off of an unpaved road in dense forest in Vermont ("lots of signs to watch for Moose along the road")
  • in upstate New York, in a grassy field with some tiger lilies near the road opposite a small pond almost entirely covered with lily pads
  • and a random place in the boreal forest of Alaska ("Probably public land, but definitely got some strange looks from guy with a long shaggy beard")

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