The Mill Hill, A Kid’s Perspective

“The Mill Hill” is an overpass that goes over interstate 90 in Wood Dale, Illinois (where the world really is flat). It was the biggest hill in the area where I grew up and it was huge. I prided myself in being able to ride my bike over it without having to stop. In fact, I could race up it and would coast all the way down the other side, exhausted. It was the biggest obstacle between the house I grew up in and my grandmother’s house two miles away. But her pancakes and hugs were worth the trip. I recently went back to my childhood neighborhood and snapped this picture of the behemoth.


Somehow the hill looked amazingly puny. My yard from the bottom to the top is a few times higher than this thing. My guess is that with all the traffic riding over it, year after year, it’s been packed down to this little bump in the road that you see here. That, or the fact that, now that we live in the mountains, this really is a puny bump in the road. I can’t get over how small that hill has become, and yet back in the day, it merited a name that struck fear in the hearts of bike riders everywhere.

P.S. Did I really use the phrase “back in the day”? Clearly a sign of old age.

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