First of all, I was very concerned about being away from the girls for 5 days. Not so much for them. I knew they'd be fine. What I didn't know was how fine I would be. I missed them, I was ready to come home, but it was very nice to have a break. And it is only a mother of small children who would think a funeral sandwiched between 5 hour drives sandwiched between 4 hour flights would be a break. But it was. So be it.
Nebraska.This was the view from the hotel where we stayed. The whole town smelled like cows- which I loved.
My sister, M with my father. We were at a restaurant that was also a bowling ally. There was bud or bud light to drink and chicken gizzards on the menu. Along with 30 kinds of steak. I love a steak and have reached my quota for the year I think, as all I ate for breakfast lunch and dinner was steak. My sister K was there too. Shes a vegetarian. She ordered the iceberg lettuce. With a side of potato.
After the service, which was just us, and not really a service, more of a gathering, we all went to lunch. My father, his cousin from Colorado, my sisters, my nephew and the Nebraska contingency of our family. Representing Nebraska are Uncle Jerry, my grandmothers brother, his wife Caroline and my fathers cousins Mike and Steve. Uncle Jerry farms- cattle, corn, soybeans- Steve and Mike run the farm now that Jerry's older. I don't know them well, anymore. Lately we've been together at funerals, I haven't been back to Nebraska for 10 years. We saw each other more when I was young. We'd visit Nebraska and ride horses, 4x4s, and ride around off road in Uncle Jerry's pick up truck for a tour, which included pointing out where marijuana grew wild.
Uncle Jerry, Steve and Mike are smart, witty, and love to make you squirm. They have big tractors and shoot big guns. One of them (I wasn't in the truck at the time) once ran over a rabbit because my vegetarian step mother was in the pickup asking them how they could be cattle farmers, and had they seen the movie 'babe'. As long as you accept their way of life, they'll accept yours. They backed right off the Obama jokes, and were very kind to K for being a vegetarian. When I'm with them I have such awe and respect for their lives and how hard it must be to be a farmer. I can't believe we share a bloodline. I imagine they feel the same way when they look at me. Less awe and respect, more how am I related to that crazy liberal?
The farm. K's car in the distance, driven by my father driving like a manic trying to make sure we all take note of his mad snow driving skills.
Colorado. Which, yes, was more colorful. But the sun was finally out. It could have been that.