Embracing the Emptiness of the Plains in the good ole USA.

As I mentioned a few posts ago, I was just in the States for a visit with my family. Without too many personal details, my father is ill, and though things are looking promising, it’s still serious. So off I trundled to the teeny town in South Dakota where my parents live, which took four flights to get to and an extra day because the last flight was cancelled due to a Winter Storm Warning.


Now hold up. This is where the record screeches to a halt. A Winter Storm Warning in late April?!?!! WTF?! But yes, there was ice and snow on the ground when I arrived, and the next day it snowed 6+ inches. Spring had been sprung in Rome for weeks (and technically it had been actual, calendrical spring for a month) and there was the freshest powder on the ground. Sigh.

Luckily by the end of my visit the weather had turned around towards legitimate spring. Now, I am from the plains, I grew up there, it’s in my blood, so I have a preternatural affinity for the open landscape and giant skies. But I would like to suggest to you that the northern plains (and I’m not talking about western SD here, which probably doesn’t need any endorsement, what with the Badlands, Black Hills, and Mount Rushmore to its credit) has a distinct and particular beauty.

prettily pastoral
prettily pastoral
empty, yes. but in the best possible way.
empty, yes. but in the best possible way.
lots of lakes, means lots of pretty.
lots of lakes, means lots of pretty.

It’s nice. Quiet, empty, and open. The people are friendly and it’s cheap. There’s nowhere decent to eat except your own kitchen, but it is not as desolate as people on the coasts imagine. No kidding, I went to a pretty sophisticated classical Indian (India, Indian not Native-American) dance performance/art installation while I was there. People are often surprised when I say that I think South Dakota and the plains are beautiful, but with views like in the above images, how could I not?

I can’t take credit for any of these photos. They were all taken by my astronomically better photographer sister. So Ab, sorry, (not sorry) for stealing your pix, they’re just so much better than mine!


3 thoughts on “Embracing the Emptiness of the Plains in the good ole USA.

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