Indiana ain’t much different than what Illinois looks like once you drive through ‘em both. It makes your eyes ache from the emptiness of it all. Corn fields on your left and corn fields on your right. There’d be maroon colored barns perched up from the dirt with a house just a few hundred feet to the right of it and nothing much else. Nothing to look at but the road ahead and nothing to look forward to other than where you were going and who you were gonna meet. That being said, that was a hell of a lot to look forward to.
We rode through Indiana from north to south on Route 65 til we hit Kentucky. Until then, I had never seen such a beautiful stretch of land through a windshield in my whole life. The trees seemed to be growing from their roots right before our eyes and the hills went on forever. Up and down. It was just about 6:00 and the orange sky was painted beyond the tips of the pines as the red sun set. Up and down. There were cattle roving around the farms of “Old Man George” and “Mary Lou” and the horses would come up to the wired fence just to see you whiz by in a flash. Up and down. The road was a perfect metallic grey and as smooth as a crisp dollar bill. The road curled and turned under our tires as we roared over the hills. Up and down. Billy was sleeping in the backseat and Alice held her head still and her chin rested on a closed fist as she stared out the window at the forest flying by. I hunched over the wheel and did about 90 as I took in all of Kentucky’s beauty. Up and down. I passed up trucks and RVs with plates from Georgia and West Virginia. We were among travelers, right where I belonged.
Just as we sneaked into Tennessee, the sun hid beyond the horizon and wouldn’t show itself til the next morning. Now it was orange, like a traffic cone orange only more orange. And it was alive. The sky was a canvas of every color of the rainbow. Red, purple, blue and even pink. Alice got the camera out and took shots of it but the lens couldn’t capture the beauty of it. It just couldn’t. Billy awoke just after the last of the colors faded to a thick black and was livid when we described what he missed. He was always a heavy sleeper.
Up and down. I’ll never forget those Kentucky hills.
Up and down.