Road Trip Through Gary, Indiana, to Chicago!

“Don’t drive through Gary, Indiana, at dark…there are some rough places.” The words of my buddy Jason (from Indiana) resounded through my head.

Unfortunately, as his wisdom was starting to mean something to me now, I found myself sitting in one of those aforementioned “rough places” smack in the middle of Gary, Indiana — and right at dark.

The little town of Gary (population 103,000) is a suburb of Chicago and was once charmingly known as the “murder capital of the world” because a large portion of those same 103,000 people wind up finding themselves either on the giving or receiving end of a messy death.

Fortunately, the residents were more interested in hanging out in front of boarded-up liquor stores and exchanging gang signs than messing with us. A quick U-turn fixed the little predicament that misreading the interstate detour signs had caused earlier.

I wish that I could have taken a picture for you. It was a cliche. For a moment, I thought that I had just accidentally driven onto the set of 8-mile or something. Or maybe the set of the Walking Dead; this town is definitely an incubator for the Rage virus if I ever saw one.

Unfortunately, digging out a $1,700 Nikon SLR and pointing it, or pointing anything else with a round looking barrel out the window, was probably not a good idea at the time. My apologies if you come from Gary — I’m sure that your town is charming. One day when I have slightly less reasons to live, I would love to come wander around.

So after more than eight long hours behind a steering wheel in rain and construction rather than the estimated six, I dragged myself wearily down the street in Lincoln Park and into the hostel to collapse. I know that road trips are supposed to be the classic American adventure, but give me a coach seat any day: from now on I fly!

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2 Responses to “Road Trip Through Gary, Indiana, to Chicago!”

  1. Next time…..leave the navigating to me… When you interfere we end up in Gary……and yes those dudes looked mean….ha ha ha.

  2. Permit me to call your attention to a web site which provides (from the perspective of one who was born, raised, educated and lived in Gary) extensive information on the

    Ethnic diversity
    Past & Present People/Places/Events

    of the “Steel City,” Gary, Indiana. Of course U.S. Steel is covered, particularly the “World’s Largest Plate Mill,” the 210 inch Plate Mill. The site gives a thorough and understandable explanation of how steel is made. It also details the tragic story of the 1981 murder of Gary Police Lt. George Yaros. The web site has many photos and does permits users to contibute/participate in a blog.

    The web site is Dave’s Den

    The web site url is

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