On an Entirely Different Front

By James Fallows

If you find yourself in Grand Island, Nebraska, as I did this morning, I recommend Trego/Dugan Aviation, the "FBO of the Plains," at the Central Nebraska Regional Airport.

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The "tail-dragger" plane in the foreground is the same age I am, and obviously better maintained.

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And when you find yourself in Rock Springs, Wyoming, as I was a few days ago, I recommend Siam King for its pan-Asian cuisine (actually good). The sky, reminiscent of Beijing, illustrates the effects of western forest fires.

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Rock Springs, in addition to being the source of most of the "trona" in the U.S., is a major truck stop along I-80. These were a few of the scores of mining trucks that occupied nearly all of the parking lot at the motel where we stayed, across the street from Siam King:

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I am no longer sure exactly which river this is in Nebraska -- and even in lush times rivers in this area typically have a wide sandy course. But compared with the last time I'd been over this route, the proportion of sand to water, after the midwestern drought, was much more dramatic today.

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On the other hand, Nebraska and Iowa are chock-a-block with windmill scenes like this:

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It's a big amazingly diverse country. Obvious point but newly dramatic when you've been on the road [sic]. Now back home and back to work.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/08/on-an-entirely-different-front/261416/