I’m on the road this weekend, back to the town where I went to college, Carbondale, IL. Being on the road has me thinking about road trip eats and how my attitude about it has changed over the years. In my younger days it was all about making time, so ideally snacks to meals would be packed ahead of time and bathroom stops would be timed to match up with refueling the vehicle, fast food would be a last resort. As I’ve gotten older I’m more inclined to not worry so much about getting to the destination asap (though I do tend to drive on the faster side of the speed limit), if we have to stop to eat I’ll still maybe pack a cooler for a picnic lunch and hopefully find a scenic location to enjoy it instead of eating in the car. Or eat at a decent, hopefully local, restaurant or diner and get a cooked meal. Fast food is still a last resort.
This is from one of my favorite places to get a sandwich and other supplies along 90/94 in Wisconsin. An aside I realized as I uploaded the header image, Mary Lou’s in Carbondale is the first place I’d ever eaten biscuits and gravy, probably the first place for a lot of northern raised kids. They make it from scratch there, but if I do see one of those machines on the road I’m going to have to try some.