After being a bit horrified by the tube of Anal-Ese we found on the headboard of our bed (no, it wasn’t ours), we checked out of our nondescript motel and had a similarly nondescript fast food breakfast before briefly exploring downtown Cincinnati.
I really want to spend more time here. It’s one of those midwestern cities I love, the ones that used to be much bigger and more important than they are now, and look it. Most people know Cincinnati — if they know it at all — as the headquarters of Kroger and the home of WKRP. But it has a pretty massive and attractive downtown area surrounded by interesting neighborhoods in varying stages between scary decay and scary gentrification.
We also found another great radio station that played the Dead Milkmen and the Pixies, and which has apparently switched to a considerably less tolerable format since our trip.
After a stop by Pamida, we made our way to Indianapolis to have lunch with my friend Bob. Those of you who have been reading the site for a long time may remember that Bob made the suggestion that led to my first online cross-country road trip in 1997. Thus, Indy has always been a necessary stop on any trip that takes me in the general vicinity.
We had lunch at an MCL Cafeteria that was much better than the one in Columbus, and then took the nickel tour of Indianapolis, including my favorite old Kroger on Tenth Street.
We arrived in Chicago to find that every road into the city was under construction. It’s amazing the detrimental effect that having only two lanes of freeway capacity into the third largest city in America will have, even on a Sunday night. We finally made it to our Best Western in the Rogers Park/Loyola area, and were amazed at how nice (and cheap) the room was. We had dinner nearby, stopped by Dominicks for provisions, and called it a night.