It was the first really nice, warm spring day we’ve had so far, and our two-hour drive out to spend the afternoon with good friends at their rural lake house in western Illinois was very enjoyable. Having spent time with both of our kids’ families this past week, we would be alone for Easter Sunday. Instead, we were invited to join Barb and Bill and their son and his wife and two boys for dinner and an enjoyable day of doing nothing!
Following the early Easter church service and delicious breakfast, we came home, changed clothes, and set off for a leisurely drive through the rich northern Illinois farm land. And after the long, hard winter months, everything about the fields and yards we passed seemed to cry out in relief, as if to say: “Finally, we’re ready. Let’s start the growing cycle all over again.”
As we rolled along the old highway, my window partially down to let the good fresh air in, we saw how green things were actually becoming, a sure sign that new life and growth was definitely taking place. No polar vortex was going to interfere with any of that! It was a good feeling to realize that very thing.
Shortly after we arrived at Bill and Barb’s, we sat down to a tasty Easter dinner. Thick pork chops
off the grill—cooked perfectly!—Michigan asparagus we’d brought along, sweet potatoes, various salads and chilled jello with fruit made for a sumptuous and delectable meal. Carolyn’s traditional Easter angel food cake, decorated with jelly beans and those yellow Peeps, was the perfect ending.
The remainder of the afternoon, we spent outside on their deck in comfortable chairs, enjoying the wonderful sunshine and terrific refreshing breezes. Our conversation turned to dreams and wishes we still might wish to have actually come true—sort of a “bucket list” type of discussion, even though I don’t care much for that term!
I hadn’t really given any of that much thought lately, but it didn’t take me too long to answer. For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to drive the entire length of the famed Mother Road, Route 66. I always said that upon retirement that would be one of the first things we would do. Of course, I’ve been retired since 2007 and have yet to take that journey, but yesterday’s brief chat session kind of rekindled—got the juices flowing once again—the idea and desire to set off from downtown Chicago and hit the road that is
such an iconic piece of American legend and lore.
I’ve traveled much of the Illinois portion of the Mother Road, but I long to cross the big river and explore ever westward. I think Carolyn and I will have to seriously consider working that in to our plans before too many more years fly off the calendar! At any rate, it made for a pleasant and whimsical conversation on a beautiful, sunny, warm Easter afternoon with a couple of very good friends….CortlandWriter