The Ex-Capital Birthday Weekend, Part 1 of 10: Unrelated Pastry Prologue

Anne smiling and holding a pecan twirl pastry.

The woman I love with a pecan swirl she adored.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover: in addition to our annual road trips, my wife Anne and I have a twice-yearly tradition of spending our respective birthdays together traveling to some new place or attraction as a short-term road trip — partly as an excuse to spend time together on those most wondrous days, partly to explore areas we’ve never experienced before. We’re the Goldens. It’s who we are and what we do.

In 2022 Anne turned 52, a number that begs me to insert a gratuitous DC Comics reference here, but it was her birthday, not mine. Indiana offers no shortage of tourist attractions for history aficionados like her. We’ve visited quite a few of those over the years, but this year we felt it was time to check off one of the Hoosier State’s biggest trivia answers: Corydon, our original state capital before Indianapolis.

History tidbits will be forthcoming. But first, our opening act: sugar.


Boyden's Bakery storefront in Indianapolis, Indiana

Boyden’s Bakery on South Meridian, ten minutes from downtown.

Every road trip must begin with fuel. To kick off our Friday morning we scoured the map for a worthy donut shop that might lie in or near our route. The winner of our attention was Boyden’s Bakery, located on Indy’s south side down the street from an IMAX. Their family business has been around since 1932 and dates back four generations. We figured they knew what they were doing. And we’re excellent figurers.

Boyden's Bakery Halloween treats!

Naturally they had Halloween options.

Sure, I could’ve skipped the donut stop and started our story in the middle like a brisk Elmore Leonard chapter, but for us the birthday narrative began with the pastries that would serve both as a warm-up exercise that got us out of the house and as Anne’s birthday snack of choice, in lieu of an entire cake that would’ve been challenging to eat while driving, especially with 52 lit candles stuck in it. Handheld foodstuffs seemed the prudent way to go.

strawberry cheese danish!

Strawberry cheese danish!

Boyden’s options were many and tantalizing to us first-time customers. Our indecision was eventually cured by the realization that the sooner we decided, the sooner we could hit the road and feast, preferably simultaneously. Our only complaint is they sacked our morsels separately rather than tossing them all in a single box that would gather our a la carte breakfast into a more pleasing group shot. Individual mug shots weren’t our favorite way to go, but we had no paper plates, TV trays, rolls of wax paper, or any other photogenic vehicle with us as a place setting ready-made for amateur foodie-pic purposes. We were also excited to get gnawin’, which is why we have no photos of the strawberry croissant or the walnut roll.

Maple bacon iced donut stick!

Maple bacon iced donut stick!

That’s it. That’s the prologue. Then we made the two-hour journey south to Corydon, where we’d soon find ourselves faced with 19th-century Indiana history, copious autumn foliage, a Civil War underdog story, a surprise festival, a smashed penny machine, a log cabin ambush, a store Beavis and Butt-Head would love, a cave we dared not enter, an epilogue that’ll also have nothing to do with Corydon, and more sugar.

To be continued! Other chapters in this very special miniseries:

Part 2: Welcome to Corydon
Part 3: Halloween and the Hallowed Tree
Part 4: A Capital Pack of Markers
Part 5-up: [coming soon]

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