This is a response to a question posed by the group creator. It turned out very long so I made it into an article instead. The question was: Ok ... the curousity is getting to me, where are you from what connection do we have to Nebraska,, and name one favorite place in Nebraska...
I hope you like my response!
I moved to Nebraska for about two years and lived in the City of Kearny and the City of Lexington. I had always lived on the West Coast so this was quite a change for me! I drove from Washington State to Nebraska and it took about two days but for me it was enjoyable experience because I got to see the differences our great country holds from one side to the other- or should I say from one side to the middle as Kearney, NE (people always thought NE stood for New England???) is directly in the center of USA. 1733 miles from Boston, 1733 miles from San Francisco.
The biggest difference I noticed was the geography. Western Washington is full of mountains and hills and lush greenery and Nebraska is flat and full of fields of corn and other crops. The weather was also completely different and one of my favorite things about Nebraska. A few differences were that Nebraska has about 100 more days of sun than Washington and gets really cold and snowy in the winter. They also have tornado weather and one of the things that amazed me the most is the strength Mother Nature has in the mid West! You just don’t see that type of weather over on the West Coast! I remember these amazing electrical storms. Just about every day in the spring you would get them. Some of them extremely loud and they would shake your windows and others were quiet in the sky leaving you only to stare at the magnificent beauty it created.
Another thing that amazed me was every day during tornado season the sky would be clear and blue and right about four o’clock a mass of black clouds would blanket the sky. Then the wind would pick up and it would rain and hail and there was thunder and lightening all over the sky. Although I never got to see a tornado while living there for the short time I did we had a few scares. The lights would go out, the air siren would sound (which was crazy in itself) and hail the size of golf balls would come barreling down. It was simply amazing stuff. Then after Mother Nature had enough the sky would start to clear and you would almost never know anything happened if it weren’t for the newly formed puddles on the ground. One of my absolute favorite things about Nebraska is that she had fire flies. Right around late sun set they would appear and I would just stare out my window, float in our aluminum boat on the interstate lakes (more on that later) or take my dog for a walk just so I could dream. It made me feel like a little girl all over again. Oh I sure do miss those fire flies!
The towns I lived in were rather small but Kearney had more life than Lexington. It’s the home town of the University of Nebraska so the atmosphere is young and fun. It also has a hockey arena now called the Kearney Event Center and boy I don’t think I’ve seen fans like these ever before. It was Storm hockey all the way for these people. And Diesel football on the off season. It went through a few management changes and boy was that an uproar but I sure hope things are back to the way they were for these folks. The story behind that place is rather crazy but the people loved it. The beer was cheap, the people were friendly and it was the weekend hang-out for the young and old alike. Kearney also had a small mall, some great restaurants and friendly people and looking back I truly enjoyed my stay there.
After a job change my boyfriend and I moved about 40 miles West to Lexington. This place is the home town of one of the largest butcher plants in the United States. The population is about 10,000 with a Hispanic influence due to the type of work that can be found there. They also had a rendering plant and the smell could just be simply awful. I puked one morning from it. I’m convinced that is why the fire flies were not nearly as plentiful there. I don’t think they could stand the smell either! I was also now about 40 miles from the mall or any chain, sit-down restaurant and about the only place I could buy clothes was the local Wal-Mart located near the freeway. This left me and my boyfriend a challenge…what shall we do with ourselves to pass the time? This challenge ended up being one of the best experiences in my life because we found things to do that I normally would have never done living in the city. Nebraska had these interstate lakes made from rock queries and we would take our dog and aluminum boat and go fishing. My boyfriend made a special little platform that extended off the back of the boat so our dog could jump in and out of the water as she wished. My dog is a swimmer and one time we canoed one of these lakes and she swam the whole damn thing. Jumped right out of the canoe and did belly flops anytime we’d try to pull her back in. We finally just let her swim. I also learned how to shoot a 20 and a 12 gage shot gun. There was plenty of open ground and wild life to roam and I think my dog was in hog heaven. She’s a Jack Russell and a hunter by nature. I can’t tell you how much quail she would push up and the amount of wild life simply amazed me. We also would walk along the braided Platte River. It’s rather shallow but pretty cool due to its braided formation. We would take lawn chairs on hot days and sit right in the middle of the river drinking beer or lemonade. It sure was a fun time! I also met a friend through work…she did not live there….only there for business. We worked for a construction company who was building an ethanol plant, which turned out to be quite a challenge in itself but that’s a whole different story. She was a Christian and we ended up going to church on a weekly basis. For her mostly for her faith, for me mostly for something to do but my faith did grow from this experience. This church was a loving church and I don’t think I’ve ever felt so welcomed in my life. We were two young, cute girls, one white and one black, and the people would come up to us with sheer curiosity as I just don’t think they saw people like us (what ever the heck that means) very often. We had a great time, joined a bible study and never before had I looked forward to church like I did then.
About eight months later my boyfriend got a great job in California and my time in Nebraska had come to an end. I was excited because I’m a city girl by heart and no longer had any cute clothes in my closet but I did not know what I had until it was gone. Now that I’m in California my faith is harder to retain, I own Coach purses and Seven jeans which had no meaning or place in the small towns of Nebraska and although people are mostly friendly here, they don’t wave at you and they don’t know you by name. They also don’t judge you by what house you live in, what car you drive or what label is stitched on your back pocket. You were simply God's creatures and that's all that mattered. I will never forget my time there and Nebraska will always have a place in my heart.
Oh, one more thing. “GO HUSKERS”!!!!!!