US Road Trip- Indiana to Boston

There’s really nothing to say about this.

Evansville, Indiana, may not be a popular hub for tourism, but it has many hidden gems. A few of them are Grippo’s (best local BBQ potato chips), Ski (local soda), a cat cafe (a cat cafe), and a small town feel. We planned our road trip around the Fall Festival, which is organized by the West Side Nut Club and attracts over 200,000 people. Yes, my mind was blown too. We will get to this soon.

West Side Nut Club. I don’t make this stuff up.
A furry fun cat-alyst. At the River Kitty Cat Cafe.

After some quality family time, we walked the halls of Jyn’s high school, had tasty Mexican food, boba tea, brunch at the Cozy Cricket, and then strolled by the river downtown.

We are on the ride of our life.
Waiting for brunch. Jyn is already working on her fiber consumption.

In the evening, it was time for the Fall Festival. Imagine a fair the size of a small city. On the way into the festival, we walked by at least 50 food vendors selling fried dough, brain sandwiches (yes. brain), corn dogs, deep fried Twinkies, and various other fair fare. Dozens of rides lit up the sky, 75% of which appeared to be the type that are designed to remove the contents of your stomach. As mature adults, we opted to have our faces painted like cats and ride the ferris wheel. This is one of the rare occasions that Jyn actively wanted us to match, so I turned into a cat. Since I do not drink, I am unable to blame this decision on anything else. We passed the Marines booth where they had their classic pull up contest/recruiting effort. If you can do 20 or more pull ups, you get a shirt. I decided to impress Jyn with my cro magnon manliness and pulled my way to a new shirt. Still got it.

You can find me at the bar. I did 24 pull ups to earn the shirt this time (see largest ball of paint picture, below).
Some cats are very purrdy.

After Evansville, we needed to reach Cincinatti, Ohio, but we planned a detour to Alexandria, Indiana, for the world’s largest ball of paint. It costed us 2.5 hours of additional drive time. Jyn thought this was the World’s Largest Waste of Time, but she was much less disappointed than she expected 🙂 We had to cancel our Antelope Canyon excursions, but ~7000 pounds of paint seemed to fill that void a little bit.

World’s Largest Ball of Paint in Alexandria, Indiana. We painted coat #26,710 onto the ball!
John showing me the picture in the Guinness Book. I am a little jealous that he is a world record holder. Notice the Marines shirt that I mentioned earlier.

Once we put a big check in the box of awesome road side attractions, we needed to get to Cincinnati to stay with friends. When we arrived, we were greeted by a friendly sheep dog and a Sheepadoodle. Sheepadoodle may be our new favorite name for a dog breed. It is a mixture of a sheep dog and a poodle. Then, we moved in all of our stuff and spent time chatting over a cheese and apple plate.

Phoebe the Sheepadoodle (left) and Finn the sheepdog (right).

After one solid night of rest and we moved onto Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to see more friends. We stayed there for a few days, which was enough time to see the steepest street in the continental US, visit Randyland, ride a funicular to a city lookout, visit the Phipps Conservatory, dance downtown, and spend quality time around a campfire on a chilly night… while burning an IKEA table.

Steepest street in the continental US. 37% grade. We felt inclined to walk it.
Randyland. Interesting people make interesting places.
Randyland is bananas.
We spent some time reflecting on our lives. Random swan neck.
Inside the Phipps Conservatory. This Sharry Baby orchid smelled just like chocolate!
I survived.
At a tapas restaurant in Pittsburgh, I noticed this Walken freezer. Well played.

On the way to Boston, the leaves started changing colors. We knew it wouldn’t be long before the highways were lined with a fiery fall display. Boston and Rhinebeck are the next stops.

Quick stop between cites. So vibrant I didn’t want to leaf.
Hay! I need a joke… Bale me out!

After navigating the spaghetti pile cluster that is the Boston street system, we arrived at my friend’s house. Since it took us around 10 hours to get there, we were ready to get out of the car. We went to IHOP, joined my buddy’s salsa class, worked on our around the world trip (extremely frustrating and ongoing due to Singapore Airlines customer service call center), visited the Maparium, Boston Common, watched another friend play in the Boston Philharmonic, ate outstanding pizza at Bertucci’s, and went dancing in the evenings at the Sabor Latino social in Brighton.

We stumbled upon this gem.
The Maparium photo area.
Boston Common. Guess what? Duck butt.
Dancing the night away. (photo credit- Lumyr Derisier)
Here’s what our feet look like. (photo credit- Lumyr Derisier)
Jyn dancing. (photo credit- Lumyr Derisier)

Boston was enjoyable. Our next stop is Rhinebeck, NY. The New York Sheep and Wool Festival in Rhinebeck was one of only two anchors for our entire road trip, and it is worth a solo post. Stay tuned for our Rhinebeck experience!

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