What is it about these river roads that always seems to lead me to some place new and full of magic? Sometimes it’s just a particularly stunning sunset or a grove of fruit trees. Other times, it’s an entire city, shabby and almost forgotten. I drive these roads, winding with the curve of the river, watching the Sandhill cranes fly home for the evening and the old fisherman sitting on the porches of their houseboats at the banks.

Sometimes I fall into the trap of every other twentysomething who lives in this area. So little to do. So few perspectives. So few opportunities. Miles of fields, upon fields. Sometimes, we feel stuck here, in a seemingly forsaken valley between cities to the east and the west that tease us oh-so-loudly with their culture, charming neighborhoods, interesting people, art films, bars and restaurants, bookstores (oh, bookstores, how I miss you), museums…

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