This is kind of weird, but there is a major US city "near" the small town where I grew up. Well, when I was a kid, this city was a distant dream on the horizon, like the city of Oz or something--maybe if I was really good, we might block out a long weekend, someday, and make the journey there. I think I've been there three times total in my life.
I actually live further away from it now, but it's nothing for people from my current town to run there and back in a day. Actually my co-worker just ran over there this morning to pick someone up from the airport, drove them back to our town, and came into work mid-afternoon, when he totally could have taken the whole day off.
So 1) for many years I failed to realize how close, geographically, I actually was to this city; and 2) apparently, my parents just didn't like going there, and always gave the impression it was too far. Understandably they probably didn't relish the city driving. But, my mind was boggled the first time I heard of people just jaunting there and back.