The first trial is getting the pack out of the hectic traffic of metropolitan Chicago, not an easy task for all concerned. Once on the outskirts of Chicago we pick up the origional route where it seperates from interstate 55. This is where we begin to see the “real America”, small towns, manufacturing, and farming communities, what makes the United States function as a nation.
Our first stop is for a quick rest break and to see one of the many giant statue-advertisements found along the route. The “Gemini Giant Rocket Man” is one of many garish advertisements which were to be found along the route, selling everything from gas and food to cheap trinkets and overnight lodging for the weary traveler. Many of which have fallen into disrepair, been stolen or destroyed, or just plain forgotten and left to the elements to slowly decay onto obscurity.
After a brief stop it’s back on the road to the first of many roadside diners for luch. Then it’s on to see one of the origional Standard Oil Company gas stations on the route.
Once in complete disrepair and about to fall down, but due to a resurgence in the route’s popularity the local residents have restored and opened it as a museum. From there it’s on to Springfield for dinner and finally our hotel for the night.