an ode

Jul. 15th, 2006 04:23 pm
semiauto2007: (Default)
[personal profile] semiauto2007
i see that iowa was ranked the third most livable state for 2006, which i think would make people elsewhere (and a lot of people here) laugh. i think most people probably think iowa must totally suck. it has seemed to be the perception almost anywhere in the US i have travelled. "iowa, you have all the potatoes, right?" someone actually said that to me in washington, d.c. i think a common misconception is that everyone lives on a farm. i grew up in a city that is basically a suburb of omaha. i had never even seen a cornfield from any closer than my car travelling down the road until i met luke and went to thanksgiving at his grandparents farm (some people do live on farms.) i didnt even know there were different kinds of cows until i was in college (a small private college in sioux city, iowa) and, the lone "city girl" at my table in the dining hall, became educated on the difference between a steer and a heifer. i always thought there were just boy cows and girl cows! there is a rural population, but there is almost everywhere! ever been to southeastern oregon? im not sure some of those places even have zip codes.

with the advent of the internet and cable tv, i can go to victor, iowa (where my husband grew up) which has a population of 1000 and the kids are wearing and doing the exact same things they would be in any city. i think people still think people in iowa are so far "behind the times" that they dance to poison at prom and wear co-ed naked baseball shirts. that for fun, they must go cow tipping. i know kids in ohio who are still going to "raves," and the kids here are way over that.

anything you can get anywhere, i can get here. we do have the united states postal service in iowa. sure, there may not be jobs like hollywood producer or runway model in iowa. but i prefer it that way. i love living here. i have lived and been to many other places and i would never dream about not coming back. as someone who loves nature, i think iowa is breathtakingly beautiful. we don't have mountains, but we do have loess hills which can only be found one other place in the world (china). we don't have the ocean, but we are the only state to be naturally bordered on two sides by rivers. we do have tornadoes and the occassional blizzard, but we dont have earthquakes, hurricanes, or tsunamis. we do have really humid summers, but we also have millions of trees and plants and grasses and incredibly fertile soil.

im not saying that iowa is better than anywhere else. i know it would be a hard argument to win with someone from the east or west coast, or especially someone from illinois. im just saying its not any worse than anywhere else. each place has things to love and things to dislike. nowhere is perfect. and im not saying that anyone else besides me would love to live here. i hear people talking down about iowa all the time and it makes me think they must have sorry lives if they dislike it here so much and don't just move somewhere they would be happier (the rub, of course, is that these are the people who wouldn't be happy anywhere). and yeah, we have problems, but not any more than anywhere else.

i admit that a large part of why i know i could never live anywhere else is that my family is here. my sister is thinking about moving to seattle because her fiance got offered a very good job there. i will be so very sad if she leaves. i don't want her to feel bad about it or to influence her decision, but i do want her to know that i will miss her terribly because she is my best friend in the entire universe.
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