Davenport, Iowa, after a 14-hour stint.
There are few sensations more satisfying than heading back to California (if you love it, as I do) from Pennsylvania (which is a wellspring of great frustration to me). The mountains and river valleys that I loved and didn't want to leave 20 years ago now seem incredibly claustrophobic (not to mention disgustingly jungly) and as we drove West, and as the hills receded, the sky grew larger to view and it was easier to breathe.
We figuratively pissed on I-80 in its Eastern incarnation and set out from Lewistown, Pennsylvania, seeking the lower interstate 70. Wow. Wide open roads, hardly any other traffic, and good road conditions. We had to add a few miles after Indianapolis to use I-74 to head north to the Mid-Western branch of I-80, but all in all, we made better time with better tempers than we did when we traversed the Eastern leg of 80 a week and a day ago.
Last night I slept deeply for the first time since we made the decision to travel back East. I didn't have nightmares, and woke up to birdsong at 4:30 am. "That's God's Bird," I told Bernie as I sat up. "Telling us it's time to go."
"Can't argue with God's Bird," he said, and we packed up and lit out as fast as we could without getting arrested.