I used to take 80, then when approaching Chicago, head south to 30 through a lot of towns, then back to 80, so that despite slower speed limits, more official stops, and much longer distances, I could get past Chicago in a lot less total time and with far less tolls, not to mention a much less spent bank of patience. I didn't do that this time, thinking I was driving on "off hours" and that I could just fly right through it. Well, maybe that wasn't my best display of intelligence, or maybe I should just go and admit that that was incredibly stupid. I should have just headed down to 30, paid less in tolls, and gotten past that madhouse faster.
There needs to be a bigass "Chicago Bypass" road with NO Chicago exits, except maybe an emergency fuel and restroom stop to keep the money coming. That's a road I'd be proud to pay a reasonable toll for. Chicago is nice for those who wish to stop and look around, maybe eat some pizza and visit the museums, and for those that love to live there, but if your goal is to get from western Iowa to PA in one winter day, a good bypass would be damn nice and would relieve a lot of road rage and congestion. It would be a hell of a relief to the truckers that need nothing more than pass the city too.
Since I'm in PA visiting family, and need to get back to IA work on the 4th, I need to pass Chicago AGAIN on January 2nd... Perhaps I better just head down to 30 to avoid it all.
At the very least, I will say that the Chicago driving headaches aren't nearly as stressful as the O'Hare airport headaches.
Don't forget to live before you die.