We drove into Illinois and stopped at the "Skeeter Mountain" rest area, just over the border, next to the Wabash River. We remarked that the name wasn't terribly inviting.

We drove on until we reached Mount Vernon, Illinois, and stopped for an early dinner at a restaurant called The Grille. You can read our review of the restaurant if you'd like.

The Grille, Mount Vernon, IL

We worked a crossword puzzle at the restaurant while we waited for our order. The interior of the restaurant was very nice, but the outside was in terrible shape. The front patio area was all torn up, and out behind the restaurant, there were stacks of junk and old equipment. I am hoping that they are the new owners and they just haven't gotten to those exterior items yet, since the interior was very well done and the food was excellent.

We drove north on Interstate 57 until we arrived at Salem, Illinois, where we checked in to room 315 of the Quality Inn and Suites. We had a nice suite that had a separate sitting room with table and television when you first come in, and then a doorway to the bedroom with the king bed, a desk and another television.

We went to the nearby Walmart to get some groceries and snacks and came back to the room. We played double solitaire, we did some reading, and we ate some crackers with cheese spread. We also exchanged anniversary gifts.