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My Story:

A Life Off The Highway

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Traveler: A life well-traveled

I am Phil Anderson and LifeOffTheHighway.com is my personal travel site. I have traveled the U.S., South America, Asia, and Europe, and visited some of the world's largest cities. Yet, I find myself drawn the sights and sounds found in the prairies of the Midwest. Whether close to home or across the world, I am curious about people and their places, and a passionate student of Indiana’s people and their places.

Teller: Sharing the story of Indiana's 2,230 'dots'

For work and pleasure, I spent 37 years, most of them with my wife Beth, visiting every one of Indiana’s 2,230 'dots' – hamlets, villages, towns, and cities, and the land in between. Driving through towns and the farm fields and forests that connect them, sparked a curiosity to learn more about each dot. What made it become a place? Why did it prosper or wither and fade? Every dot has a story and there’s more there than meets the eye.

Phil and Bev Anderson

Phil (and Beth) Anderson

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Teacher: Connecting the dots

Raised on a farm in the fertile 12-Mile Prairie in central Indiana, I have a deep appreciation for scenic rural areas, farmland, and small towns. As a cultural heritage tourism professor at IUPUI (Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis), I try to inspire students to explore the intersection of culture, heritage, and travel. I came across a quote about travel that I share at the start of each semester.

Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller. 

 

–Ibn Battuta
  Moroccan Scholar and Explorer

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A Book: Life Off The Highway

I am now connecting all the information, history, geography, and culture I gleaned in my journeys into various media that you will find interesting and useful. And I am working on a book, Life Off The Highway, that will chronicle my 40+ years wandering the byways and backroads of Indiana. I'll share our experiences reading historic markers, visiting parks and natural spaces, driving through or picnicking on old bridges, dining at local eateries, staying at bed & breakfasts, and snapping pictures of buildings with long forgotten stories. I also love old roads, routes, and their history. I hope these stories and ideas inspire you to wander as well.