Road Trip Day 30: Home, via Missouri and Western Illinois

Last day of traveling! We were up around quarter to 8 am, had a pretty decent breakfast compliments of the Days Inn, and were on the road by 9:30 am.

Very shortly after we got on I-70, we crossed the Kansas River into Kansas City, MO, which is where the downtown part of the city actually is. As was often the case on this trip, driving through downtown was crazy (involving roads going every which way, at extremely slow speed limits, with signs pointing us to exit here, merge there, etc), so I didn’t see much of the city. Dave pointed out Kauffman Stadium, where the Royals play, after I had mostly passed it. Oh well – we’ll be back.

Around 11:30 am, we left the interstate behind and turned off on to Route 63. We thought it would be a slow, tiny road, but it turned out to be a decent highway. This took us north, bringing us to the small town of Moberly about 30 minutes later. Here we turned off onto Route 24, which really was a tiny, slow road.

We arrived in Hannibal, MO just after 1 pm. We didn’t have a lot of time to spend here, because we really just wanted to get home at this point, but we plan to return at some point. It is most well-known for being the birthplace of Mark Twain, but it is also just generally charming and has a lot of fun historical stuff to explore.

We sent a text message to our friend Jeremy (who also hails from Hannibal) to get his recommendations on where we should eat lunch. We ended up at LulaBelle’s, one of the places he suggested. A former brothel, it is now a restaurant and B&B. We had some yummy catfish sandwiches and were back on the road by 2 pm.

Hannibal, being on the Mississippi River, is also on the edge of Missouri. We picked up I-72 here and crossed the river into Illinois, our new home state. We were promptly greeted by seeing several state troopers on either side of the freeway, and decided that it would be prudent not to continue going 80 mph as we had for so much of the trip. We arrived in Champaign, safe and sound (and without any speeding tickets) around 5 pm.

We got to our new house to find a beat up black Suburban parked in the driveway, with the driver’s side door wide open and the keys in the ignition. We thought this was terrifically sketchy. Our landlady, Vian, had left the backdoor open for us with the keys inside, so we cautiously entered the house to make sure everything was okay inside. There was nothing out of the ordinary there. Dave called Vian to ask if she knew anything about this truck. She laughed and said that the “rustbucket” (as she called it) was her husband’s. We breathed a sigh of relief and made sure to greet him when he came back for the truck.

Welcome home, right?

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