Driving Across America: Day 2 – Farmville

Today we found ourselves driving through Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, and eventually Nebraska where we are now.

It was a long day full of flat farm fields, minimal rest areas, and heat from the glaring sun.

I found myself questioning how people came to decide to stay and make a life for themselves in many of these middle states. There seemed to be nothing worth staying around for.

For most of the ride I felt like I was taking a drive through the past. Everything was very old, barns were falling apart all over the place and you could tell they had been standing there for decades, rotting away. There didn’t appear to be anything for miles. No matter what direction you looked everything seemed to blend in and look the same. Farm land, farm land, and more.

Occasionally you would spot a farm house along the way, typically in what seemed like the middle of absolute nowhere as if a tornado had decided that spot was efficient and a good place to plop a house down.

We felt like we were in the land of silos. Everywhere we went by where there was a hint of civilization you were bound to spot farm equipment.

What surprised me was the lack of animals. Yes, there were a number of cows grazing in the meadows along with the occasional horse, but when you think Midwest and farm land, don’t you think farm animals in abundance?

I though I would see chickens running about, goats scattered here and there, or more cow farms, but there wasn’t any of that in sight.

One sight that caught our eyes was the glorious windmills. The windmills put here are being used to harvest power, and they are bigger than any one I’ve ever seen before. Each blade, there are three per windmill, must have been around 50-100 feet in length. It was tough to tell while driving underneathe them how large they actually were. However, when we came upon a wind farm, and not just a random windmill here and there, I couldn’t help but be meerized by their beauty. There was just something so pretty and neat about them. For some the windmills are eyesores, but I found that in a deserted location like Iowa, the way the windmills turn in the wind resembles someone doing cartwheels in the fields. It was just a sight to see. Below is a picture of one of the windmills so you can see just how massive they are.

Also, I never thought I would run across the RV and Motor Home hall of fame.  Only in the Midwest!  I’m not too sure this would be a riveting stop but I’m sure some people must enjoy it?  Only in Iowa would a town have a name that sees made up by mistake.  Take a look at this picture, who names a town “What Cheer?”  I bet those folks aren’t too cheery.  Finally, the last off sight was the world’s biggest truck stop.  They had flashy lights and everything.  We were almost tempted to stop by.

What we’ve also noticed along the way was that the drivers out here are rather crazy. The speed limit on most of the highway is 70 so you expect people to be going fast, however, when you think Midwest it just seems to make me imagine things moving at a slower pace. The drivers here are not slow in any means. I feel I can comment on their driving abilities since I went to college on Long Island and I’m also from Massachusetts where drivers have a bad reputation.

This summer there appears to be a lot of road work being done on I-80. Don’t worry about it getting in the way of your driving plans though. There’s hardly anyone on the roads and we haven’t found ourselves being slown down yet due to construction, which is good.

While driving my mom and I had a brief moment of getting spooked when a bird came out of nowhere and swooped down right above the windshield and glided along the curvator of my car. Of course we both let out screeches of surprise but luckily we didn’t get hit! Unfortunately the bugs here in th Midwest are not as fortunate. My windshield has been collecting quite the collection of little flying friends. I can only imagine how dirty the car will be when we pull into Mountain View.

Tonight we’ve pulled into a Double Tree hotel in Omaha, Nebraska. I’m looking forward to dropping down yet head on the many fluffy pillows on my bed.

Tomorrow we will continue our trip through Nebraska and head towards Colorado. I’m hoping to stop in Denver, but who knows what our travels will have in plan for us.

Until then, happy travels.

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