Friday, March 7, 2008

Road Trip - Day 4: Crossing over Rivers

It took no time to reach the Nebraska-Iowa border which is delineated on the map by the flow the Missouri river. Honestly, I was not that impressed! I still think the Amazon river in South America kicks butt.
Below is a sample of what to expect from the stretch between Iowa and Illinois.

Now, when it came time to cross from Iowa into Illinois over the Mississippi river, I did let go a wow! The river is huge; I can't imagine how much wider it gets when the Missouri joins the Mississippi in St. Louis.

This leg of the trip was short: about 468 miles in 8.5 hours, of which the last 1.5 hours were spent in traffic on I-55 cruising through the south side of Chicago.

Road Trip - Day 3: The Continental Divide

Do not be alarmed! We did not hit the road for a cross-country trip again; I (Juan) am just continuing the story where I left last November.

So, after our descent from the Rockies, we made reservations to spend the night at a pet friendly motel in Rawlings, Wyoming. In contrast to our first motel stay in Utah, the operators at Rawling charged a $25 fee for each pet. In retrospective, we should have paid the money to have a clear conscience but we didn't; we sneaked the pets into our room. That doesn't sound too bad, except that the front office and clerk's bedroom was one room away from ours. We walked pass the front office with Caramelo (doggy) inside a blanket. Then, we carried the cat's kennels passing them for suit cases, at least we thought they would. Finally, we brought our luggage. Wow, three trips in front of the clerk for an overnight stay. Whatever, his reasons, we were thankful the clerk looked away.

The next morning, we got up at 5:00 am to avoid repeating the same scene before the motel clerk. Of course, that proved to be futile since the clerk bid us a farewell from his window.

With the sun rising before us, and Rita fixed with a cup of non-fat latte wet cappuccino that she scrapped out of a tiny business along the freeway on-ramp, we continued our journey through the state of Wyoming pass the Continental Divide (What's that? Click here:

Wyoming offered an endless sight of high plains populated by cattle and horses. As we moved further east, the high plains gave place to a prairie where we had our first glimpse of vast American corn fields a.k.a. cow power food. By the time we crossed into Nebraska, the scenary remained pretty much corn all throughout.

During a pit stop, I took pictures of our caravan and front passengers of the truck.

After 648 miles and 11 hours driving (the longest leg in our trip), we decided to skip dinner at McDonald's for some juicy Omaha-grown steak at a privately owned restaurant. Yum!