I prefer my ampersands unreversed and a bit more indirect approach to Chillicothe, Illinois, than the road identified as “Chillicothe and Edlestein” near the top of this map, but yes, crossing Route 29 is well worth your full attention—as is the large-type advice on this map produced by the Illinois Valley Wheelm’n when it was still known as the Tri-County Wheelers.
Using caution means being aware of your surroundings. And when your eyes are truly open to the passing scene, you’re likely to be pleasantly surprised—whether you’re on the bicycle or not. Maybe you’ll find a 14-mm box wrench in surprisingly good shape along the road or a 40-year-old map from Florida in your email.
It may be that what you find depends on what you value. And what you value may change.
One day you see the horizon, the next you see the wild turkey. One year you divide your disposable income among bicycles, bananas and books; the next you invest in something that doesn’t begin with the letter B. One decade you imagine the future, another you try to retrieve the past.
What are you looking for—and finding—these days? And are you having fun?