September 2021



Even though my flight does not leave until, essentially, early evening, I am already in Indianapolis.

My objective in Indy was to stop by Out Word Bound Books to pick up the latest mystery by Anthony Bidulka, Stain of the Berry. Bilduka, the gay Canadian author I discovered last summer, is not readily available at Borders or Barnes and Noble, so a trip to a specialty store was in order. I also picked up a couple of other books that looked promising—for I have quite a bit of time to read in the next day.

However my drive up allowed a fair amount of reflection. It wasn’t that long ago that I enjoyed driving and would do it at the drop of a hat. Living in Laramie, Wyoming, encouraged driving because if you wanted a change in scenery—be it restaurants, streets, or whatever, you had to drive at least 45 minutes to Cheyenne. Other cities, like Fort Collins, were further.

I can still remember the Sunday morning that I woke up and decided to head to Denver, on 15 or 20 minutes notice—grabbed a quick shower and was out the door in no time. Driving was just a part of the lifestyle in Wyoming, if not the entire Rocky Mountain Empire.

Since then I’ve had a complete 180 when it comes to driving.

I hate it.

The sixty minutes from Bloomington to Indianapolis feel like an eternity to me—I hit every stoplight in Martinsville and the traffic seemed to move glacially, even though I was exceeding the speed limit by a small margin. I basically felt like I was enduring the traffic and the drive hoping it would get over with relatively quickly.

It is, in a way, how I feel when I take the train from Weimar to Frankfurt. In reality it’s about a two and a half hour train ride, yet it feels like an eternity. I sit in my seat and read or watch movies, hoping that it will arrive early thus putting me out of my misery.

Upon a bit of further reflection, it just occurred to me that Indianapolis and Frankfurt both have something in common: both fundamentally suck. In Frankfurt I’ve yet to eat at a restaurant I’m willing to return to for a second meal and the areas I typically traverse (e.g. the train station and its environs) is crawling with nasty skanky ho’s and a wide variety of nasty drug addicts. Indianapolis, where at least I’ve found a couple of places I like to hang out, is also depressing, although I image that the ho’s in Indy are less skanky and nasty, even if they do hang out at the truck stops.

That said, I do look forward to flying. The though of strapping myself into a seat 17.2” wide for 8 hours doesn’t really bother me. I actually find flying to be rather relaxing. It’s an opportunity to sit down, read, relax, take a nap, and then wake up some place different. The fact that I can traverse such long distances in such little amounts of time never ceases to amaze me. What used to be a long boat journey is reduced to the briefest of flashes.

It really is magic.

Of course it’s 12:45 and I still have a few hours before I need to be at the airport, so I am going to venture forth into Indy and see what there is to see. I’m not sure what I am going to do yet, but hopefully it will be fun.

4 comments to Travel

  • Ed

    Indy has the Circle Centre but so close to Noon it will be crowded. Have a safe flight. I know a guy who would actually have a heart attack if forced to fly on the 13th. He doesn’t go to work and won’t even leave the house on the 13th. He is otherwise a fairly smart man.

  • someone at shul told me that indianapolis was “schleppy.” i asked her, “what do you mean, schleppy?” and she shrugs her shoulders and says again, “i dunno, y’know–schleppy.” may your travels be safe, and i’ll see you when you get back!

  • J

    Some day you should visit Frankfurt with someone that knows it well – then you might discover that it’s a great place.

    I also hate driving, but have never really liked it much (unlike you).

    Hope you had a good flight.

  • John wasn’t fond of Frankfurt either and you already know that we strongly prefer b-ton to Indy. 🙂