Brussels, Illinois, is home to 188 souls according to the sign at the edge of town. There is a finger of southwest Illinois stranded between the Illinois and Missouri rivers with little access to either side except for small ferries. The rich farmland in between is isolated, rolling countryside with a couple of tiny towns.
The Great River Road runs under the bluffs up the east shore of the two rivers. At a quiet spot we found the Brussels ferry, a flat deck that holds about 15 cars. It is a free service of the State of Illinois, going back and forth on demand 24 hours a day. It took us to this bucolic nowhere.