You Can’t Get to Cape

I was living in Florida when I bought a reproduction of a 1926 Rand McNally road atlas to try to plot out my trip back to Cape Girardeau.

I noted to Dad in a letter that “i got this new-fangled book from the AAA people, but they didn’t allow as how it was possible to get from fla. to mo., so they wouldn’t even give me a triptik.

[Editor’s note: It was my style to type informal communications on cheap newspaper copy paper and in all lowercase. My theory was that it signaled to the recipient not to expect clean spelling and grammar.]

Wait until the bridge is built

aaa suggested waiting a few more years until they get the bridge built across the river at cape-what-ever-it-is. they said there’s a ferry there, but it ain’t to be counted on.

Why don’t you just wave from Illinois?

aaa pointed out that you have to go all the way to either memphis or st. louis to drive across the river and, confidentially, they said it don’t look much different on the west side of the river than the east.

maybe we could just stand on opposite sides of the river and wave, they suggested.


9 Replies to “You Can’t Get to Cape”

    1. I’ve relied heavily on the Lady in the Sky for more than a decade. I was on my way south north of Nashville a couple a trips ago when Waze told me to take the next exit. That didn’t make any sense until I got about two miles south of the exit and ran into a 20-minute parking lot.

      The next time it told me to take an exit, I did, and I had the pleasure watching miles of gridlock from the vantage point of a parallel surface road.

      On my last trip north, I was going to hit Birmingham at rush hour, and had been listening to truckers on the CB complaining about the traffic. Miz Waze told me to get off. She led me on a confusing route, but the next thing I knew, I had popped out north of the city and out of the backup.

      I don’t miss the days of TripTiks and paper maps (although I keep a paper atlas in the car, just in case).

  1. Dear Mr. Steinhoff,

    I’m an associate producer on a documentary series for high school students and wanted to get in touch with you about potentially licensing some of your photographs. Would you mind emailing me so we can discuss?

    Thank you,
    Colleen Goodhue

  2. As my dad used to say…” You can’t get there from here”. My first trip to Florida in 1958. Cape to Nashville all two lane. Nashville to Atlanta mix of 4 lane Interstate and Highway 41 a mix of two and four lane and sometimes a three lane passing zone up hills. Atlanta to Tampa I-75 and US 19 on and off…

  3. The bridge isn’t the only thing that changed. Apparently it used to be 11 miles from Cape to Jackson, according to the map. 🙂

  4. I lived in northern Illinois as a child and we would take trips down to the “farm” where all the cousins lived. (Having said that, the family lived in Naylor, Poplar Bluff and Harviell so, there was not “A farm) I loved crossing THE river near St. Louis!

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