Country roads, take me home.

Jul 6, 2012

in Play


visiting america's heartland

Welcome to Iowa! This is it, 17,000 photos the hand-holding-man-friend took of every asphalt, dirt and gravel road between Moline, Illinois and Vinton, Iowa. Just kidding, I would never do that to you, but honestly it was a really beautiful drive from the airport to my little hometown, and renting a car was THE BEST thing I have ever done. It allowed us to mosey along and creep down the highway, and shit bricks about passing tractors, and cruise through “main street” at 15 mph and freak out at four way stops (he thought those were like magic “but how do you know whose turn it is?”). But really though, it was hilarious. The hand-holding-man-friend was born and raised in New York so he doesn’t drive and I hadn’t driven since before my cruise ship pre-New York days circa 2006. What a pair. I think I acted pretty cool in front of the budget rental guy even though on the inside I wanted to die and get back on the airplane and hop a cab back to my safe little apartment by the park. But I didn’t, I spent about 15 minutes in the parking lot getting my mirrors adjusted and my heart outta my throat, but then I turned the key, planted my white knuckles at ten and two, gave it a little gas and we were off!

dirt roads of iowa


But really to everyone who told me it was “like riding a bike” and I rolled my eyes at you. You were right, touché. I should also buy a bike. Look, corn.

corn fields of iowa


The weather was SO nice. Iowa really behaved itself and didn’t unleash any of its usual sweltering humidity and terrifying bug swarms. Good job mother nature, thanks for painting such a pretty blue sky over the ‘ole stomping grounds.

Vinton, IA main street


THIS is main street, and YES the sky was that blue. I didn’t color correct any of these photos, this is just what it looked like. Unreal. And YES, is smells as good as it looks.

gas iron in antique thrift store in iowa


And look, an antique and thrift store right downtown. They had tons of cute stuff and no website. I don’t understand it. But check out that gas iron! The bunny is creepy, sorry bunny.

seating of choice for community band concert


This is a land where everyone has at least two lawn chairs and a blanket in the trunk of their car at all times from June-August. Just in case.

milk shake from Tootsies in Vinton IA


Except for that whole sweet marriage thing, this milkshake was the best part of the whole trip. It tasted like my childhood, after a baseball game, getting a milkshake with my dad. Just a small chocolate shake from the ice cream shop at the end of town that has had probably a half a dozen names since that time, but has always remained delicious. The current name is “Tootsies,” hence the tootsie roll served on top of every shake. We don’t miss a beat in the heartland. Thanks for a sweet trip, promise not to be a stranger.

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