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Under the spell of Iowa in July

Eastbound coal waits, with the small town water tower and grain elevator of Calamus looming in the distance.


This was such a beautiful, perfect Iowa morning, I know I'll never forget it! Rain was moving in from the west, so there was a bit of that wonderful storm light feeling going on here. Seemed like coal trains were stacked up everywhere, standing still while higher priorities went around.


Man, how I love Iowa in July! You can get drunk on it. It can cause you to abandon all logic and reason and any better judgment you might have once possessed. It will whisper promises in your ear that it can't begin to keep come January or February . . . but you'll believe them just the same.


I can assure you that it will get its arms around you on a bicycle. But even in your car you are not safe, provided you stick to the two-lanes, stop, get out and stand around a bit, wander down Main Street of some little town, stand beside a railroad track, or get anywhere close to a lush field of tall green corn. Because there, in air heavy with heat and humidity, even as sweat beads on your upper lip and trickles down the center of your back, you will be overcome by this feeling of rightness - this absolute certainty that of all the towns, of all the fields, of all the roads and tracks in all the world, you have, at last, stumbled onto that place where you were meant to be. Then all you'll really want to do is to find some way to stay there . . . forever. Don't say I didn't warn you. ; )

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Taken on July 10, 2011