Iowa, corn comes from Iowa, do NOT listen to Nebraska, they are mean, but first...
South Dakota is way bigger than I thought it would be, that's what she said, and it took me an entire day to cross the state. I may have gotten through a little faster had I not decided to stop at The Badlands National Park, a decision heavily influenced by a Red Hot Chili Peppers song. I could not believe how remarkable this place is, there's just something so alluring about the canyons and land formations. I won't go into details as to why I can't go hiking, but I'll let pictures describe my little hike. Good thing I had plenty of painkillers!
I detoured to Pierre, which is the capital of SD, mostly b/c I was very hungry and there was no town in sight. Pierre is a very low key town, but I did learn an important lesson, it is spelled Sovth Dakota, we've been wrong all along!
My friend Ben, who used to be my boss at Microsoft, had graciously invited me to stay with him and his family in beautiful Lake Okoboji, however it was late at night when I finally arrived in Sioux Falls, SD. I decided I would see Ben the next day, then I decided to go to Nebraska, because this makes a lot of sense:
Here's the truth Nebraska, YOU'RE OUT OF THE FUCKING WAY! But, its okay, you're not the only state that's inconvenient. Maybe its because of low expectations but I was impressed by Omaha in that it remarkably urban, and I don't just mean they have black people, I mean there's tall buildings and stuff. After spending the night in Omaha, I was grateful not to have been shot because of my choice in motel location, and I thought it would be neat to go visit the Cornhuskers!
FUN FACT: Nebraska is the only college football team I have seen more than once without them facing Texas, this happened in 06 when I was tricked by Colt McCoy into buying Big XII championship tix (no, oklahoma doesn't count, though technically they were at the same game). The reason I bring this up is that the people in Lincoln were unexplainably hostile! After all the support I gave you people while freezing my ass off at Arrowhead?! Ben tells me its because I was wearing UT gear (and driving with UT plates I suppose), but seriously?! Where's the beef Nebraska?! I kid you not, a little boy, no older than 10, gave me the evil eye while I was touring the campus, I'm sorry but I don't know where they get their reputation as the nicest fans in college football.
You know there is no sign that says 'Nebraska welcomes you' and that's because they don't. Anywho, after being practically chased out of the state, it was on to Iowa. I found out there is a whole lot more to Iowa than just corn, I mean its still mostly corn, but there's other stuff. On my way to Okoboji I stopped in Le Mars, IA, Ice Cream capital of the world! Talk about a bold statement, I wonder how the places where Ben & Jerry's, Dreyer's and Blue Bell feel about it. (Le Mars is home to Blue Bunny) Read my review on Yelp!
Finally made it to Lake Okoboji. It was great catching up with Ben and hanging out with his family. We took his boat out for a spin, chated about the good old days, and yes even had some corn. A BIG THANK YOU to Ben and his family for their hospitality! If y'all are ever in L... well El Paso now I guess, you have a place to stay, though you'll probably not want to =P