The first night of my journey was spent at a roadside rest along I-80 just fifty miles east of Sharon, PA. I was too scared to venture off the highway. The very thought of making a turn on an off ramp gave me heart palpitations.
Next day the hills and valleys, mountains and forests of Pennsylvania gave way to a road now straight and flat. It was as thrilling as hearing “ A Hundred Bottles of Beer On The Wall.” Son of a nut cracker, this was Ohio.
The second night’s stop was another roadside rest. I was lulled to sleep by red winged blackbirds in a nearby marsh and jolted awake by the hum of refrigeration rigs. The sight of the sun rising through the mist from the marsh made up for it. It was all good.
The Pollyanna in me wanted to find at least three exciting things about Ohio. It was tough but I did it. #1. There are Amish people in Ohio, I said hello to some at a store; they shunned me.
#2. The Ohio State service centers that dot the interstate are one stops with information centers, eateries, gas and comfort stations. The off and on ramps were also straight and flat.
Tied for #3. Apparently, I can pass for a trucker in the state of Ohio. The showers are free for truckers and others have to pay. I needed a shower and was walking in to pay for one alongside a trucker who’d been at his career for 35 years. I asked him where I could pay for a shower. “Nobody knows you’re not a trucker; just go on in.” So I did! Nobody stopped me.
But duking it out for third place is this one: after countless flatliner miles across Ohio, a sign appeared in the distance, “Curve Ahead.” I swear, I got excited!
(aka Tin Can Traveler)