Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America – Day 8

Aug 09, 2012 View Comments by

This trip has included a lot of visits to Nebraska – by my count at least 7, maybe 17. It seems every time I pay attention to where we are we have again crossed over the Missouri and returned. Today was no different. No sooner were we underway from Yankton, SD, when those “Welcome to Nebraska” signs popped up, along with an SSE heading on the GPS compass. Clearly, our leader could not let go of the Cornhusker State, or maybe he just couldn’t make up his mind—but for good reason.

The land along the Missouri in the northeast corner of Nebraska and southeast corner of South Dakota has begun to change. The corn and soybean fields diminish and hay becomes the dominant crop; it too fading away to range land as we keep riding northwestward. The sky is getting bigger as the land runs away unobstructed for miles. It might seem strange, but the long stretches of straight roads and modest hill climbs are the perfect way to appreciate this landscape. The impact is its sheer scale, and covering large swaths of it at speed make you realize just how grand it is. We even skirted a large thunderstorm, watching it roll across the land like we had ringside seats. With these vistas I’ll happily keep crossing over.

Today was also Wacky Waitress Appreciation Day. One, when asked “how do we get to town?” told us confidently to “go to downtown and take a left – you can’t miss it.” She was just so sure that was all we needed to find our way. Then we had a leisurely lunch— like time stood still leisurely—somewhere, only to have a much-desired grilled cheese show up as a chicken sandwich for one of us. Finally, at dinner, a requested Caesar salad arrived looking suspiciously like a spinach salad. Not usually a big deal until the waitress actually didn’t know what a Caesar looked like and required a consultation with another waitress to assess the situation. Maybe we just drew a quirky card today when it came to food service but the entire profession gained our great respect and esteem when after dinner our waitress flagged us down on the sidewalk well away from the restaurant with Jim’s camera in hand. It certainly was a Waitress Appreciation Day.

As we close out the day we mark our one-third point on the trip – in days and mileage. The sights continue to delight, the people continue to charm, and we grow into each other’s company with continued ease. Priceless, right?

Text by Jeff Arpin

Read more here:

Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Intro
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 1
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 2
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 3
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 4
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 5
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 6
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 7
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 9
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 10
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 11
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 12
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 13
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 14
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 15
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 16
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 17
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 18
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 19
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 20 
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 21 
Retracing the Lewis & Clark Trail Across America—Day 22 

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