Iowa

 Friday, May 25, 2012
IOWA! We had such a nice time there—a space away from everyday, in quiet idyllic but sort of drab since there’s just a sameness, miles and miles of fields, the same kind. But what civility-something that is sorely missing hereabouts but more on that later.

Went to my/our buddy Bob’s wedding to his sweetheart Anne. Whose family is in Iowa on a (!) farm. Tom and Janice, her folks, were a lively and interesting couple, open and warm in the midwestern style, and possessors of a wind farm. In fact Iowa is covered with thousands of wind turbines, the biggest I’ve ever seen, way larger than the ones in the San Joaquin Valley coming up from LA, and a lot bigger tan any I’ve see, anyway, in Europe.

But of course. This is ‘Murica, and Iowa is just one big farm, soil tilled everywhere you look and corn just starting to pop up. They are way behind us in germination, due to the 30-below winters, which last a lot longer; but in a couple months you won’t be able to see anything from car level, as corn obscures your view. I said to Jan that it was sort of unfair to come there without the corn; but then on the other hand you can’t see anything BUT once it’s ripe. And they don’t eat it like we do. Sweet corn is not to the Iowan fancy, so you get horse corn all munged up in a creamy stew. Lots of beef, too, and gravy.

I decided to have a big Omaha steak on the way out, and I’m glad we did. Omaha was hoppin’ and it makes me so envious, and even somewhat angry, that the towns and cities around here—and don’t you know anyone I mentioned Iowa to assumed a smug superiority. Hell, Omaha beats the pants off anyplace these parts. Safe, Clean, Hopppin, with musicians on every corner, carriage rides, out door dining. It was swell.

But between the wedding and the feasting and our pre-flight dinner in downtown Omaha, we visited Storm Lake, where I went to Buena Vista University (college then—now everyplace is a U; and it HAS grown) when just a callow dumpling of a lonesome lad. And boy was I lonesome when I got there. Spent every dime I had calling my HS sweetheart—a real pig—at UDel, before I settled into BV life. Then it was swell. My roomy and I rented a little pad off-campus and our gals would call in “snowbound,” which one could do whenever there were more than three-foot drifts and a good wind. Got to be such a habit that they made us all cute nightshirts out of cuddly leopard-print material.

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