Beguiling Bloomington

As we entered Indiana there were wind turbines and a much flatter landscape than we had imagined. Also, there is an air of polite indecision, at least on the highway. You can select your own speed limit.The university town of Bloomington, Indiana is filled with interesting homes, a fabulous rails-to-trails bike/multi-use path and of course, friends.

We stayed on the west side of town, away from campus, in the home built by our friends. It is a certified Platinum Level green home. It offers so much more than the beautiful and energy-efficient inside filled with Indiana limestone counters, load of windows and beautiful wood details. There is also the backyard which is a micro-prairie filled with great plants, visiting birds and other wildlife. The hooligans mentioned below have not returned.While in Bloomington we enjoyed walking through the campus of Indiana University. There are wooded paths between the limestone buildings which was shady and so nice on a very warm and rainy day. Unfortunately, the Eskenasi Art Museum was closed for renovations. We did enjoy the exhibits at the Mathers Museum of World Culture.

The sprawling city has maintained the original court house square. It is surrounded on all sides with, you guessed it, shops and restaurants. We stopped for a local beer at the Owlery before checking out the Indiana Theater which is just off the square.We explored music shops, bookstores and organic food co-ops. There was music, laughter and great homemade food with our friends and of course, ice cream from the iconic Chocolate Moose. Limestone is represented everywhere inside and outside of most buildings. Sadly, it was too stormy to visit any of the local limestone quarries. I will just recall the abandoned water-filled quarry scenes from Breaking Away, the movie which is based in Bloomington.

Bloomington is not mountainous, but it did not leave us flat.

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