Thursday, September 28, 2006

the signs of Kansas

kansas 019 It seems so wrong to break the stillness and quiet of this little fishing lake with a generator, even a quiet generator, but I need to work and there is something of a thrill watching the sun rise over a tiny lake, whisps of fog protecting the banks, fish popping to the surface and their tiny rings of disturbance spreading about the lake surface and the sky turns blue then light blue then edges with yellow and then there is no doubt but that the sun will rise again. The thrill? Oh yeah. That we are in a place without drinking water, without electricity, off on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere, no phones (but there are fish) and I’m online. Isn’t that so weird?

If you’re ambivalent about having an abortion, driving highway 50 through Kansas will cure your ambivalence. Sign after sign after sign with fat cheeked white babies advertising anti-abortion dot the roadside. I was amazed at how far they have stretched. They are not in Nevada on highway 50. Nor along the portions of highway 50 we travelled in Utah or Colorado.

There are billboards along highway 50 in Kansas, before each and every town, a small sign will advertise a church. Pretty much that is it. Incase you’re ambivalent about abortion or need a church, signs along highway 50 in Kansas will help you out there. Today should be a cold day in Kansas; the weather people here know their stuff. The clouds forecast for yesterday appeared without complaint and the temperature that should drop today, if it follows the cold night and freezing ground this morning should follow its forecast also.

I really enjoy driving the backroads but the trucks in Kansas on highway 50 are driving me insane. Why are the taking the little 2 lanes? Why not drive the interstates if they don’t want to be held up by a trailer going 50-55? All day yesterday, we had convoy after convoy irritated by our poking along. I stay off the interstates because we like the less travelled roads and I don’t want to drive faster than 55. But here in Kansas, all the trucks seem to like the highways I’ve chosen (50 or 56 or 400 they like them all) and I can’t figure out why they don’t just stay on I-70 if they want to zip down the road. We love stopping at the Santa Fe trail roadside markings and reading what they have there, we like toodling along at 50-55 and I don’t like 2597 semis lined up behind me riding my ass.

Real estate agents from California would slowly loose their minds travelling the small roads of Kansas; enormous, gigantic farmhouses litter the roads and it boggles my mind how much even a delapidated ruin would go for in the Bay Area. I can’t imagine these are very old farmhouses even if they look ancient; how did the settlers HEAT those monstrosities? And why are Kansas farmhouses so tall? Why don’t they spread out? I’d love to take the time to simply photograph them all, but I am reduced to trying to capture something from a moving vehicle. They are graceful, ornate, gigantic, confusing and dominate the landscape.

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