Did you know that Indianapolis wasn’t always the capital of Indiana? It wasn’t always the center of the “state.” In the early days, settlement was only in what is now the southern part, but as the territory filled, a new, more central capital was needed. The city was laid out by Alexander Ralston, an apprentice to Pierre l’Enfant, who platted Washington, D.C.
For the most part, outside this D.C.-esque “mile square,” Indianapolis is laid out on a grid, which makes it really easy to navigate for au pairs who are adjusting to driving in the U.S! Nevertheless, it doesn’t hurt to have tools available to assist your au pair, like a GPS system or an easy-to-read map of the city. I recommend the “Where: Indianapolis” maps available for free at area museums and the visitor centers.
Some families don’t need an au pair who drives, but if you do, as you prepare for his or her arrival, in addition to organizing the emergency phone numbers you’d prepare for any caregiver, consider adding directions/maps to the places you’ll need her to drive most, like your kids’ school(s), the nearest grocery, your branch library, and nearby parks or other favorite locations for outdoor and indoor play.
Important: Mark your calendars for June 9, when au pairs will take a tour together of Monument Circle in downtown Indianapolis. The tour is offered from Spring to late Fall, and I love it, so if your family welcomes an au pair later in the year, I’ll happily repeat the activity with our newcomers!