The Nebraska Trilogy II: City Girl Meets Wide Open Spaces

I gazed out from the top of University of Nebraska’s beautiful Memorial Stadium. As my handsome boyfriend chatted with an old coworker, I took in the stadium, UNL’s campus, and the Lincoln skyline.

In the distance, past the edge of the city, I could see a few looming structures. There were a couple of them rising up from the flat expanse. At first I thought they were high-rise hotels.

“What are those?” I asked the guys, pointing out the structures.

“They are elevators,” they said matter-of-factly.

“Oh, ok,” I said, even though I had no earthly idea what elevators were. After a few seconds, I asked, “Uh… I don’t know what that means.”

This was just one of many conversations I had in Nebraska that outed me as the “city girl” that I apparently am. I was shocked by the number of things that were so everyday and common to Nebraskans that I had never even heard of!

So for the rest of you who don’t know, grain elevators are “storage areas that are used to house grain and prepare it for eventual shipment,” according to  Elevators are typically located near railroads for accessibility.

I was intrigued by the size of these things.  As we drove across Nebraska, you could see these elevators dotting the horizon. It seemed as though every single town had their own elevator. Who knew?

Logan’s family and friends got quite a kick out of the fact that I’d never heard of an elevator, but it didn’t end there.

Appropriate uniform for tractor riding

Their close family friends are farmers and we spent an entire day at their home. I couldn’t believe that I could stand in their front yard, look in all directions, and not really see anything except corn all the way to the horizon.

They gave me a tour of the farm, showed me a feed lot, let me sit in a tractor, and fed me a cream can dinner. It was a wonderful day of firsts.

[Side note: a cream can dinner is when you load up a cream can with corn, veggies, sausage, and a couple of cans of beer and steam the entire thing. It was delicious!]

Step one of the cream can dinner


Even amidst the open space, I felt a bit landlocked in Nebraska. After all, it is a triply landlocked state. This means that it does not border the ocean, nor do any of the states it borders, nor any that they border on.

However, the wide open spaces allow for beautiful sunsets.

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4 Responses to The Nebraska Trilogy II: City Girl Meets Wide Open Spaces

  1. Allison Anderson says:

    i learned about grain elevators when matt took me to visit his family in north dakota for the first time a couple of years ago and i was just as bewildered! verryyyy interestiiing. can’t wait for part III 🙂

  2. Karen says:

    1. I didn’t know what an elevator was.

    2. I still don’t know what the heck cream can dinner is.

    3. Love you blog. 🙂

  3. Lindsay Mader says:

    This made me laugh.

  4. DeLaine Rabe says:

    Ah I loved reading your take on everything! It’s so crazy to hear things that I see everyday and have grown up with all my life being so foreign to other people! It was very nice meeting u and hope to see you soon!

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