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Atlas of not-so-remote places

2011 July 21

Judith Schalansky’s Atlas of Remote Islands is subtitled “Fifty Islands I Have Never Set Foot On and Never Will.” This map, by contrast, is concerned with places I have set foot, none of which could really be called remote:

Places I have been in North America

As of July 2011

This is something I started… probably several years ago, now. It seems fairly obvious, really: I like travel, I like maps, I like to present information visually, I have the design tools…

Obviously, it’s still just something I created for personal use. This isn’t the best United States map, cities aren’t labeled, my various visits to Canada are just floating there, north of the border. For personal use, though, it’s quite adequate.

It was some years before I decided to color in states where I’ve visited. This confirmed some already-evident patterns, such as the general northeast-southwest axis of travels. It also reveals some interesting “holes,” such as Indiana, which I’ve driven through probably two dozen times by now, but have never stopped in aside from tollway plazas. (Nothing personal, Hoosier State.)

Of course, I haven’t shown anything in Iowa other than residencies, as it would be pretty-well covered with orange dots, at this scale. Between school field trips and one or two work projects that took me to all kinds of far-flung corners of the state, I’ve visited a lot of the Hawkeye Cyclone state, naturally. (On some occasions with a photographer who, every year, got a new state map and used a marker to highlight every road he took getting to and from photo shoots; I’m not the only one entertained by this kind of thing.)

Otherwise though, this is pretty complete, I think. Where will I go next? I don’t know; choices, choices.

3 Responses
  1. July 21, 2011

    Might I make a suggestion? Never stop in Indiana. Evil, evil place. It hates you and wants to make you cry. Even if you’re just passing through. Vile, nasty, icky place. Did I mention evil? Very much not pleasant at all.

  2. Matt permalink
    July 21, 2011

    Oh-kay, then. I guess if anyone has ever been longing for a “Kleefeld On Indiana” feature, there you have it. 🙂

    I confess I’m not real likely to test this warning any time soon, fwiw.

  3. July 22, 2011

    Side amusement I just found. Infographic on how states excel WRT the environment/public health/science/etc. A little unfocused, but still interesting…
    http://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/responsible-living/stories/infographic-united-states-of-the-environment

    And I’d like to point out that the BEST way that Indiana excels along those lines? Johnny Appleseed died there. If that’s the best they can come up with, I don’t want to even be in a state neighboring them!

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