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Archive for March 1, 2012

Not quite there yet…

I’m posting from a motel in southern Wisconsin, about 40 miles from my destination.  Seems odd to stop so close, but I set out a little too late this morning so I wouldn’t have been able to make it before it got dark (since it was pretty heavily overcast), plus I didn’t have anyplace to stay in Madison yet, plus there was a coupon for this motel in one of those rest-stop coupon circulars. Plus it’s an extremely inexpensive motel (with the coupon), which is good, because I neglected to choose a Google Maps route that minimized the amount of tollway travel.  The way I-90 in Indiana/Illinois handles tolls is strange to me, after having experience mainly with the Pennsylvania Turnpike.  On the latter, you get a ticket when you get on and pay when you get off, proportional to how far you traveled.  Here, you just have to go through a bunch of different toll booths scattered seemingly at random along the route, and charging widely varying fixed amounts from 0.60 to 3.50.  It seems rather inefficient by comparison.

Although the most surreal moment was when one of the tollbooth cashiers asked me, “Are you finding everything okay?”  I guess she formerly worked in retail or something, because I don’t know what that question would mean in the context of tollway travel.   Unless it’s “are you finding your exits/turnoffs okay,” which would make it a roundabout way of asking, “Are you lost?”

Looks like southern Wisconsin is in for snow and rain tomorrow, so I’m probably best off waiting until mid- to late morning to get back on the road.  Which will hopefully give me more time to get some writing done.

Oh, the coolest thing I saw on the road today was in Indiana, when I passed through the most enormous windmill farm I’ve ever seen — literally dozens if not hundreds of windmills stretching as far as I could see.   Not only fantastic to see so much clean energy being generated, but it’s just awesome to look at.

(What they really ought to do is put a bunch of little wind turbines alongside all the freeways, harvesting energy from the wind of cars and trucks zooming by.  I’ve seen it seriously proposed, and I think it’s a great idea.)

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