Day 1: July 18, 2015

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Launch point Harrison, Ohio. Launch time oh-eight-hundred. Thirteen Greater Cincinnati Miata Club members met in the Bob Evans parking lot and most of us ate breakfast there. With careful study and a little imagination, bits of all eight cars can be seen in the photograph.

Organizers Bob and Wendy Askins did a marvelous job leading us over the route they had plotted. Summer construction meant this was not a simple "west on Fifty-Two" outing. IN-46 substituted nicely for a good chunk of US-52 and took us through this 1937 bridge over the Whitewater River. More scenic two-lane got us to the outskirts of Indianapolis.

We joined many more Miatas at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. The museum's Dream Cars exhibit had been the seed for this entire outing. When Bob & Wendy asked some Indy Miata Club friends if the club had any plans for the Dream Cars exhibit, the answer was something like, "What exhibit?" They soon figured it out and started talking with museum folk about a group visit. They also spoke with the Windy City Miata Club who liked the idea, too. Arrangements were made for discounted admission and docent led tours. Tour time was set for 11:00 which explains why I got up at 5:00 so I could leave home at 6:00 to reach Harrison at 7:00 so we could depart at 8:00 and reach the museum by 10:30.

Not many cars belong in an art museum but the seventeen that make up the Dream Cars fleet certainly do. Some are one-off dreams that individuals built and used and others are corporate design staff dreams that were never intended to be produced or driven. These pictures show Paul Arzens' 1941 L'oeuf Electrique (Electric Egg), an incredible reproduction of the lost 1935 Bugatti Type 57 Coupe, the 1949 Norman Timbs Special, the 1941 Chrysler Thunderbolt, the Harley Earl designed 1951 Le Sabre XP-8, and the 1956 Buick Centurion XP-301 and 1959 Cadillac Cyclone XP-74. The museum website has more and better pictures but the right way to see these cars is to get to the museum before August 23.

There was time for lunch and motel check-in before the Indianapolis club led us to dinner on a spirited 50 mile drive through the Indiana countryside.

Dinner was at Pit Stop BBQ in Brownsburg, Indiana. A surprise bonus was learning that this was on the Dixie Highway (US-136) alignment I'll be driving Monday. I got another surprise on the way back to the motel. The Cincinnati group sort of planned to drive back as a group but I got caught by a light leaving the parking lot. We had radio contact so I let the group know my GPS would get me there and not to wait. The planned route was not the same as what Garmin came up but the Garmin route had a little treat. My last visit to Indianapolis had been to drive the little known Dandy Trail. There isn't much of this scenic drive that circled the city in the 1920s that carries the name these days. Much to my surprise, my first turn was from the Dixie to the Dandy. Groovy!

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