“I’m going to Nebraska!” I hear myself saying more than once. And more than once I got a very confused face and reply “Why?”
Well, from their reaction it seems there’s not much to see there. The huge flat planes of the Midwest. Nebraska. The state which Hollywood movies and tv shows pick as background of characters to show they come from the middle of nowhere (e.g. Penny from the Big Bang theory). Or where they send people into witness protection.
And while it is super fast and convenient to travel between states in Germany or even European countries we had to take two planes and a time zone change of two hours into account to reach my third state after Hawaii and California. Yes, I know, America is big.
Still I felt excited about it and Bridget was happy to share all kinds of stories with me how it was to grow up in the Tornado Alley. “We watched ‘One night in Nebraska’ [aka ‘Night of the Twisters’, a film about the night that 7 Tornados hit Grand Island, Nebraska] in school when we had nothing to do than wait for our parents to pick us up in the afternoon.”
Our little road trip to the Indian Cave Park to meet with her friend – “Maybe you have seen now all the highlights of Nebraska” – and my naive assumption “Let’s stop at a coffee shop on the way back” gave me an additional understanding, I guess.
I still hear Bridget’s laughter when I tried to google for coffee.
So compared to LA we had a couple of very calm and significantly colder days with visiting her family and having good espresso, good food and a bit of guitar jamming where the calmness was only disturbed by entertaining all the different kids. And I would count “surviving more than 15 minutes on the small but fast merry-go-round” definitely as a personal achievement.
In the middle of a state where a big part of cattle is raised I was eyed a bit questioning when I chose to eat preferably vegetarian. “Does he know how good steak tastes?” Haha, yes, I do. But it actually makes me feel physically better to reduce it as much as I can. So I tried to stick to it when hummus betrayed me with a food poisoning. Hummus. Friend of all. For about 24 hour I felt so terrible. It felt like my vegetarian example of eating healthy totally backfired.
Even now, 2 weeks later, I can’t touch hummus yet. Isn’t it ironic?
But Coca-Cola and pretzels, a relaxed day, some Netflix movies and a trip to Omaha’s zoo – maybe the second highlight of Nebraska? – brought me back to life. And it also helped that her sister’s kids focused more on exhausting Bridget than me.
Thanks for taking me to the Midwest!
“You know, there’s this joke that on football Sundays the stadium becomes the third largest city in Nebraska.”