I live in Duluth and don't travel much. But let me tell you, Duluthians, about the first state you hit if you keep traveling south. I spent part of the past weekend driving across Iowa. I have not been to Iowa since I was a kid, and something seems to have changed.
A short distance over the state line, we saw windmills in the distance. They were far away but could be seen clearly. You could tell they were enormous. Scary big.
I kept saying things like, "They're freaking me out!" and "Those are so scary!" Of course, I said, too, "Those make a lot more sense than digging up coal to burn it," but mostly, I was freaked out.
My kids asked, "Why do you think they're scary, Mom?"
And I'd say, "Because they're so big. It looks like an army of robots landed. Or space aliens, like in 'War of the Worlds.'" (This meant nothing to them, of course, not having seen that movie.) "And what if a tornado came by? Would those blades go sailing through the air? Would they spin super fast? Could the tornado pass right through them? Are they strong enough to withstand it?"
The windmills raised many questions, and unfortunately for everyone involved, there were no answers to be found within the minivan.
As we continued south and turned onto I-80, the cross-country semi traffic started. Again, I was scared by the size of things.
There were semis carrying windmill parts, huge sewer pipes and houses cut in half. There were semis carrying semis. There were oversize-load escort cars, like, a mile away from their load. What's the deal with that?
Then there was this big beam. "Shouldn't they transport that on its side?" I asked, always the critic. I passed the truck, and another carrying a beam just like it. It was scary.
We were sitting at a rest stop later when I saw the beam semis pass by. I ended up passing them twice.
At the rest stop, I began to wonder whether Iowa makes everything bigger. Never in my life have I been able to see over the wall in a bathroom stall, but in Iowa, my whole head can peer over. My daughter took a picture, in which I am standing flat on my feet. I have titled it "Hello There."