Friday, December 30, 2011

Planning Dreams

One clear evening, I went to the west end of my neighborhood, 
to a place where I could stand alongside the highway 
to get a good view of the sunset. The exchanges to enter and exit
Interstate 74 from I-465 have been torn up for the past year to create wider lanes and more sweeping, easier to navigate turns. 
Some of it has been completed and drivers have been happy 
to make use of the new pavement.

Since I was a girl, I've been fascinated by the contrails left behind
by jets as they fly over the place I stand, rooted to the ground.
I especially like to see the skies in the morning and evenings, when the
contrails of many planes seem to intersect, weaving descriptions
of their journeys, just as the cars and trucks speeding past me on 
the highway were creating theirs. Early in our long relationship, 
Carl caught me watching the planes and pointed some of them out to me,
partly in jest, telling me where it was headed and its altitude. 
I understood then that, just like the trucks on the road, 
each plane had its specified lane, its place in the sky. 

He brought me outdated Jeppessen aeronautical charts, 
which I still have, describing the routes. 
I loved them then and still do. The picture below, showing 
the Indianapolis area, was scanned from an old Jeppessen 
United States Low Altitude En Route chart.


dive said...

Woah! So cool!
I love the map, Speedway. And contrails, too. On the train into London I'd watch the planes spinning their webs in the pre-dawn sky and the sun making rainbows of the contrails.
I confess to a giggle when I found Shelbyville on your map (being a Simpson's fan) but then I realised it's only right and proper to have such a revered name so close to the racetrack. Was the place named after Caroll? I do hope so. I love him for hauling his ancient ass over here for the Goodwood revival each year where I get to see him and his cars. 2012 will be a special Shelby Cobra celebration here with some great racing. I can't wait.

Speedway said...

Well, you're probably deep into video guy-world as I'm typing this, but I want you to know that the town of Shelbyville was founded in 1850 and named after Isaac Shelby,a Kentucky governor and Indian fighter. The town is almost directly SE of Indy.

The Town of Speedway, incorporated in 1925 was named after...ya wanna guess?... the Speedway, which was opened in 1909. At the time, the town was about 7 miles away from the center of Indy, but is now surrounded by it. Indianapolis was named after Indiana, which is named after the very Indians the white men were so insistent on killing off. The city is located in Marion County, named after Francis Marion, a Revolutionary War general who is credited as being one of the "fathers of modern guerrilla warfare."

Auburn, Indiana is located in NE part of the state and was the site where Auburn Cord and Duesenberg autos were built.

dive said...

Wow. So much history in so young a place. You really are queen of research, Speedway.

lin said...

I will never forget the strangeness of the lack of contrails in the days following 9-11.

Speedway said...

Hi, Lin. Same for me. I guess having grown up with them in our skies, we take their presence for granted. Carl made it home just before all civilian aircraft was grounded wherever it happened to be. He had a crew stranded with their plane in Minnesota, told them to just use the company credit card to get whatever they needed for the time being, they'd sort it out later. Carl seemed lost w/o a plane to drive.

When we went to the boat the following weekend, it was strange to see the sky clear of contrails - but one, that rose at a very steep angle. Carl explained it was probably a military jet, taking off from Wright-Patterson AFB and it was ascending as quickly as possibly for its airspace, far above the civilian lanes. I watched its contrail until it ended abruptly, somewhere very high.