Inez’s Guide to Storm Lake

CHAPTER 1

So. Imagine you’re in Iowa,* driving north on US71.  Two lane highway. Posted 65-mph speed limit that folks other than me actually obey. The road is edged with green as you pass fields of corn and soy beans, pig farms, cattle yards, more corn and soy beans, chicken farms, turkey farms, corn, soy, grain silos, corn, pigs, soy, hay, farm house, cows, corn, hay, silo, pigs, lighthouse, corn, chickens…..

Lighthouse?

Yep. When you see this, you know it’s time to turn left onto highway 7: Lighthouse1_2 (click to enlarge)

Apparently, it’s not uncommon for frigates and tankers*** sailing across the great Iowa cornfields to become lost in our thick, "miso soup"**** fogs and run aground on small herds of black angus. That lighthouse, it’s saved the life of many a sailor and cow. Sometimes, however, on moonless nights, the notorious shipwreckers douse the lighthouse beacon and lure unwary vessels aground***** for plunder. No, wait….that’s 18th century Cornwall.******

I do want my readers to realize that taking this picture was not without danger. Mostly the danger of embarrassing myself when a state highway patrol car pulled up next to my hatchback just as I’d finished taking the pic. We rolled down our respective windows and the very cute officer acertained that I was not having car trouble but was rather yet another goober tourist taking a picture of the lighthouse. We then chatted — well, I chatted, he was probably making sure I wasn’t a terrorist intent on destroying Iowa landmarks. Fortunately, around here any mention of working for the university provides good cover ensures a nice welcome. Officer Yummy finished by jokingly asking me about a point of grammer and I answered with a smile but stopped short of flirting because, given my luck and social skills, I’m probably the only woman on the planet who could flirt her way into a ticket.

*Sing a few bars of "State Fair"** to get in the proper mood.

**Yes, the 1945 version. The 1962, Pat Boone/Ann-Margaret version is just…just…shudder.

***The tanker link/picture is PROOF of their midwest land runs

****from the soybeans, silly.

*****or would that be "acow"?

******Iowa. Cornwall. There’s a connection somewhere, I just know it.

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2 responses »

  1. Good, good. I see you’re putting your ennui to use.

    “`After all,’ I said to myself, `possibly the pleasure that its author has found in writing it is not the infallible test of the literary value of a page; it may be only an accessory, one that is often to be found superadded to that value, but the want of which can have no prejudicial effect on it. Perhaps some of the greatest masterpieces were written yawning.’”

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