Cutting Across the Country To Minnesota
by James Glaser
July 11, 2011
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I have this long list written out on a yellow tablet, and as I pack my bags and get them in the car, I get to cross of that line. I am taking a driving trip back to Minnesota to see my children and grandchildren, plus go to a family reunion. It is never fast to drive, because I tend to stop and look at anything that catches my eye, and I like to talk and listen to people I come across.

At first I was going to drive my Isuzu pickup, but last week I had a flat, and I took that as a sign I should take the Caddy. I bought the Cadillac for road trips, and well, this is a road trip. To get the Caddy, I went on Craigslist every morning and night looking for just the right one, and I found it in Jacksonville—a 1996 Sedan DeVille, with 47,000 miles on it. I was the first to call and drove over with cash in hand.

The man said it was his late father's car, and his mom had no need for it. It was a surprise when I found out the father was from right here in Madison, and many of his family still live here. When I took the car to my local mechanic, he told me he knew the guy who had it, and when it was on the lift it looked like a new car underneath. Topside there is a tiny dent in the rear fender from some yard tool hitting it when it was parked in the garage.

It is a Cadillac, so it is kind of like driving your couch down the road. It is white, it shines, and it looks big. However, looks can fool you as on our last trip to Montgomery, Alabama it got 24.8 MPG in the 600 mile round trip. Wanda says it is the only car she can sit cross legged Indian style on the front seat. The only draw back is that it takes premium gas.

So, I'm heading out today and will bring a lap top so I can write about what I see and who I talk to. I am starting out straight north through Georgia and then will work my way across Tennessee, into Kentucky, back going north through Illinois, and then taking a left when I get past the Wisconsin border and into the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul where I'll be spending my time.

I still have a few hours of "list work," and then I'll need a good night's sleep. This will be Wanda's and my longest separation since we got married, and I don't like that one bit. Wanda is going to be super busy leading educational workshops in Chicago and Washington DC. We are trying to rendezvous in Atlanta as I come home, and she moves to her next city. I'll also miss our home, my workshop, the garden, but children are such a great part of your life that you never can see enough of them.

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