A trip to Rolling Prairie via memories – Part 1

Something new
Something new

This is just a small part of a larger construction project on the north side of Reynolds, Indiana. I wanted to get a photo of  a more interesting aspect of the construction, but I could only do that from another road where traffic was heavy and there was no convenient place to pull off and get out of the car.


When I started my tip to Rolling Prairie (RP) I didn’t realize how much grist the trip would supply for this blog’s mill. I’m not sure how many posts will grow out of this two hundred mile round trip. I learned years ago from Durrell’s Alexandria Quartet that a story can be told from many points of view with different dimensions and different emphases. This trip brought back a lot of memories for me because I had made it so many times, from the time I was a small child to and older adult. It seems that the older I get, the more I remember the trips from the further past. We made the trip numerous times when I was a child because we would visit my maternal grandmother in Clinton a various times through the year. The easiest route from RP to Clinton and return took us through Lafayette. In later years I often made the trip from university in Bloomington to RP via Lafayette. The fern trip (remember the ferns?) starts and ends in Lafayette, with RP being the mid-point.

I wrote about a memory of going north through Lafayette on our way to RP in my post Day 58, so I won’t bore you with that again. The first town north of Lafayette on my journey was Brookston. I don’t have any really old memories of Brookston. But I have more recent memories. By recent, I mean within the past fifteen years or so. In the last couple of years of my dad’s life he would drive himself and Mom down to visit us. He was OK for most of the tip, but he didn’t want to face the traffic in Lafayette, so when they got to Brookston they would stop and call us. Cindy and I would drive to Brookston where I would take over their car (Dad didn’t trust female drivers) and drive to our home while Cindy drove our car. Mom would usually ride with Cindy, and Dad with me (female drivers).

The next town north is Chalmers. You don’t see much of Chalmers from the road. The highway kind of skirts the town. As you enter you have a gentle curve to the left; just enough of a curve to encourage you to slow to the speed limit. Almost immediately you have a gentle curve to the right, after which you are leaving town and can once again speed up. As a child I wondered why we never drove into town. As an adult I went into town and found that there isn’t much to see. There was one mystery cleared up.

The next town is Reynolds, where today’s picture was taken. US 24 crosses Highway 43 (the road I was on) in Reynolds. When I was a kid there used to be a restaurant on the northwest corner of that junction. I don’t remember the name of the place, but I remember that it was in what appeared to be a converted house. On the few times I remember us stopping, the place was packed. There is no restaurant there anymore. It is now the location of a convenience store/gas station. Now, instead of getting a meal, you can get Slim Jims. That doesn’t seem like an upgrade to me.

Next time: Part 2