Sunday, September 12, 2010

Iowa Memories

My grandfathers were both farmers.  Both of my grandmothers were teachers.  They all lived in the same community in southwest Iowa-- in the town of Coin, to be exact.  I spent a huge portion of my life there, as both of my parents wanted to live close to home, and the rural life was a good place to raise kids.

I remember the weather there...  We got a lot of the extremes, believe it or not...  It could get scorchingly hot sometimes, so humid you felt you were breathing water, or so unbelievably frigidly cold you had to travel by sled.  I remember sledding on my dad's back from my home to my aunt and uncle's to get a roast for dinner.  We took my sled with metal runners, and actually sled down the gravel roads that had inches--literally inches!--of ice coating the rock...  I remember the tornadoes, and the hail.  I remember the dust, and the wind.

But there were times when it was stunningly beautiful outside.  When the partly cloudy sky hid the sun just enough to keep things from being too hot, but not chilly.  Those were the days when it was a joy to play outside.   When you could play your radio really loud and not worry about the neighbors because they were so far away.  When you could explore the properties next door, find the creek in the field, or get lost in the small woods bordering the property.  Every newly discovered thicket was a fantasy land made just for us.  The wonder of just finding it was such a pleasure.  We pretended we were characters from our favorite TV shows.  And we had hours of fun.  Days of delight.

And then the fireflies came out at night.  And the whirring locusts.  And for a quiet, midwestern evening everything was filled with sound...  The headlights of nearby cars as they drove past on the roads.  And the swatting away of gnats that seemed to only be interested in us...

Today, I was having a nostalgia moment as I stood in my studio garage and felt the soft breezes waft over my cutting table.  And I had to come inside to record where my thoughts took me...

I think I'm going to have a good evening.

Live Life with Relish!

Top image from cwwycoff1, Creative Commons License.
Bottom image from iowa_spirit_walker, Creative Commons License.


  1. Amen brother. I guess that's why I didn't move to far away, even though I spent years swearing I was going to get as far away as I possibly could.

    Mike Nielsen

  2. Mike, you're a big part of those memories... Thanks so much, bud! It's good to know that even though I'm thousands of miles distant, my friends from Iowa are just a keyboard away! Enjoy those Iowa nights for me! : )

  3. You're such a writer, Corey! I could almost see Iowa all the way from Singapore.

  4. I know those icy winters, long hot days of summer so well having grown up in northern Iowa. I don't have fireflies where I live now. I miss those days of lying on my back in the grass on a summer night, gazing at stars and watching what seemed like millions of fireflies. Thanks for the memory.

  5. Thanks so much, Jane. I don't know why a simple breeze prompted that rush of memory, but it did... Funny how that happens sometimes, isn't it? : )

  6. @SummerStudio--I miss fireflies terribly... There's nothing like them in San Diego. Sometimes it seemed like there were swarms of glittering magical lights, do you remember that? When they were sometimes pretty thick? And the stars aren't the same here as they are there, obviously. I think I may have taken them from granted a bit... : )


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