Bridges of Madison County

On The Road With The Adventurers

There is nothing glamorous about the early days of a road trip, especially when you are headed out west and just trying to make good time. Long nine-hour days on the road, one after another, are not my favorite part of this adventure.

Luckily, we had good friends to stay with on the first night who “treated us like kings” as my sons report. “Don’t get used to it,” I told them. This is a road trip.

The highlight of today may be going to breakfast at The World’s Largest Truckstop right off the highway in Iowa.

Route 80 is taking us across the country and it feels endless. Just us and the truckers, with Johnny Cash singing along to help us pass the time. We’ve crossed New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois in two days. Now we’ve hit Iowa and we finally said ENOUGH. We have to get off this road.

I’m glad we did because we found the winding roads, rolling hills, and memorable Bridges of Madison County.

And, thanks to a super friendly woman at the Chamber of Commerce in town, we even found a great cafe in Earlham to take our pet llama, Llarry, out to lunch. Earlham is a small town where “Chicks with Checks” host weekly concerts. Who knew Iowa was so hip?

On our way to see some of the covered bridges we stopped by Winterset. The town square was surrounded by great restaurants and shops. One of them was an old pharmacy with a lunch counter. We pulled up a seat and ordered cherry, vanilla, and chocolate cokes. “Just like in the old days,” my husband says.

It was such a welcome relief from the highway. Thanks for the warm welcome, Iowa. So glad we were passing through.

Photo by Alissa Alteri Shea

Teacher, Traveler, Writer. Believer in justice for all. Most importantly, Mom of two boys.