The Oasis

This is not a mirage.

I’m not referring to a lush spot in the desert where you can rest your dehydrated head. And no, I’m not talking about the annoying British bros that seem to lack any self-awareness. Here in Illinois, if you’re driving on the highway and feel like you’re about to kill someone because you desperately need Panda Express, you’re in luck. Every so often you’ll pass a raised bridge of goodness situated above the clouds road. It’s basically a glorified rest area that cars are able to drive under. Keepin it classy in Illinois. This, my friends, is an Oasis.

The Oasis that I’m familiar with offers a lot of delicacies such as: Sbarro, Taco Bell, KFC, Subway, Panda Express, Auntie Anne’s, Starbucks, and a Travelmart. Today my mom and I stopped by Sbarro and both got a slice of cheese. I felt complete after that.

The great thing about the Oasis is that when you sit and eat your weight in grease, you can watch the cars drive underneath you. It’s so romantic.

The people that work there always look like they’re on the verge of suicide. They have massage chairs located by the restrooms so I don’t know what they’re so upset about. There’s also one of those kiosks with people selling phone covers. What more do you really need in life?

The Oases (betcha didn’t know the plural of Oasis!) are great because they allow tired drivers to relax in a food court-type setting and re-evaluate their lives. Have you ever stopped at one of those side-of-the-road rest stops? Everything is usually made of wood–the drinking fountains, the toilets, the vending machines, etc. They seem like they should be the setting for Texas Chainsaw Massacre or something of the like. Whereas the Oasis could be the setting for Supersize Me 2. Did that movie really turn people off from eating McDonald’s? It just made me want french fries.


23 thoughts on “The Oasis

  1. Addie says:

    I’m giving you high marks not only because I enjoyed the blog, but, because I’d put those last two sentences as SuperSized in Funny. I think that was sort of a segue.

  2. Alas, New York just has them on the side of the road. God forbid you hit one on a sunday and have to hike 3 acres across the parking lot to get a heat-lamp burger…

  3. Yes, Supersize Me as really THAT gross. I will never eat at McDonald’s again and have almost eliminated my intake of fast food. Yuck!

    The Oasis you describe here does sound like a little slice of heaven, though 🙂

    • Yeah I read a book called “Skinny Bitch” and it put me off of meat for a year. I need to avoid all the sick foods that are out there…but they taste so good!

  4. Pete Howorth says:

    There’s a place with an equally awesome name where similar things are housed. The vibrating chairs, with a coin slot? I don’t even know how that works, I certainly wasn’t popping in £2 to find out.

    Good old “Service Station Just Past Junction 20 On The M1” at least, I think this is what it’s called.

    Never heard of Supersize Me until now, just checked it out on Wikipedia, I need to see this documentary! I would imagine, if you have 90 meals of any sort of meat over a one month period you’d get quite ill… I’m lucky to get one meal a day!

    • Hah wow the name of that place just rolls right off the tongue.
      Yeah Supersize Me is good but I think the guy was vegetarian before he did the “experiment” so I think his body reacts worse than other people’s would. But what do I know!?

      • Pete Howorth says:

        I would try it myself, but not only can I afford to pay for 90 McDonalds meals over the course of the next month, I think I’d die!

  5. Lisa says:

    The best thing about Illinois, besides the great city of Chicago, is, hands down, the occasional oasis that straddles our highways. Not only do you get to enjoy watching the cars speeding underneath you, you get to meet, or stare at, in Lily’s and my case, the people who are traveling in the opposite direction. The oasis serves both north and south bound, east and west bound. What a great convenience!

    I love that on the way to the airport, 35 minutes, we usually feel the need to stop and get something to eat/drink. And by “usually” I mean always.

    • Addie says:

      Nothing like looking and judging people, is there? I’m so guilty of that–and, I am the worst eavesdropper ever. I would shush my own family to hear the conversations around me. I’m almost ashamed.

      • Pete Howorth says:

        Hahaha! “Pipe down will you, I’m more interested in what they’re talking about three tables over.”

        Definitely doing that.

    • ALWAYS. There hasn’t been a time in my memory that we passed the Oasis and said, “Uhh not really feelin it today.”
      People-watching, especially before the Ren Faire, is one of my favorite past times.

  6. Marya says:

    I have only been to the Oasis one time because we had time to go to the Oasis. I felt above it all going in there…if you know what I mean. I above the ground, little people in little cars passing underneath moi. Just knoshing on something fried and drinking some fizzy chemical in the heartland of America. The time we went…was a good day.

    About the eaves dropping Pete and Addie…bring it on. Eavesdropping is the only kind of listening.

  7. After a long five-hour drive there is nothing more I want to do than stop off and buy a slice of cheese from a suicidal-looking teenager.

    As a kid I remember these rest areas used to have large areas of arcade machines in them. I never had the money to play on them back then so it is a shame they are so barren these days.

  8. That does look pretty cool though…the only thing I ever see near roads are dead animals. When you say slice of cheese, I hope you mean cheese pizza. Not literally a slice of cheese. That seems sillier that they’d sell slices of cheese. I know if they did I would probably be one at some point.

  9. “The great thing about the Oasis is that when you sit and eat your weight in grease, you can watch the cars drive underneath you. It’s so romantic.”
    Don’t ever stop writing, Lily! You have so much to give…

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