Saturday, 2 September 2017

Day 4: Yankton SD - Rapid City SD

So, yes, Saturday, South Dakota.  Here is an example of the scenic glory of the part of South Dakota wot lies east of the Mighty Missouri.
Southern New Mexico, I take back (some of) the nasty things I said about you...
It is my considered opion that His Bobness' Hollis Brown killed his family and then himself less out of desparation at Great Depression-era poverty and more from seeing that ^^^^ out of his window every morning.  Mercifully, most of the first hundred miles of it were shrouded in fog.

Out of the said fog, at one point, loomed a billboard for a local business, viz. "Dick's Body Shop".  One might assume that Dick operates some sort of motor-car repair facility, were it not for the additional information that he offers a "24-hr Toe Service".  So, car repairs or chiropody?

After a fair chunk of flat agribiz, South Dakota is bifurcated by the Mighty Missouri.  In my case, cruising up I-90, at Chamberlain.  Atop the bluffs on the east bank of the river is this:
Dignity - statue near Chamberlain SD
According to Wikinaccurate:
The 50-foot high stainless steel statue, by South Dakota artist laureate Dale Lamphere, depicts an Indigenous woman in Plains-style dress receiving a star quilt. According to Lamphere, the sculpture honors the culture of the Lakota and Dakota peoples who are indigenous to South Dakota.
And you're wrong again, Your Bobness, see, because Dignity has been photographed.  There are also some more bridges across the Mighty Missouri, but bridge fans know where to look for pictures of those.

On the other side of the river, South Dakota offers a different variety of not much.  It's slightly lumpier and drier and more cow- and less maize-infested.  This is the view from a "Scenic Overlook" on I-90:
I kid you not.

South Dakota does actually have interesting things to look at, but they're all crammed into the bottom left-hand corner.  So you can drive across more lumpy prairie until your eyes glaze over, turn a corner and come face to face with this:
And this:
And these:
Prairie dog pitching for own TV series
And so on.  The Badlands, as they are known, are doubly jaw-dropping because they're in South Dakota.  You expect to find This Sort of Thing in for e.g. Utah or Arizona but certainly not here.  Anyway, they're teh Aces, and anyone seeking to slash the budget of the National Parks Service is almost certainly not fit to be President.

I have not been to the Badlands before as I didn't know they were here, because I didn't look at the map carefully enough when visiting not-far-away-at-all Mount Rushmore in whenever it was.  2011?  Anyway, I'm not going back to Mount Rushmore, because they haven't painted the heads green or anything.  I shall continue Westward Ho! tomorrow where it might be cooler.  Today's forecast was for 84 deg F but it hit 93 and the Nice Lady in the motel reception opined as how it is forecast to be hotter tomorrow, as I melted unappealingly across the floor of her office.

I don't know whether it's just because this is Labor Day weekend, but Rapid City, being the main metropolis for all the touristy bits, is charging way over the odds for accomodation.  I am in a place called the Avanti1, which is charging $180 for a room which, while perfectly serviceable, is no better than places I've paid half that for earlier this week.  Someone is having a giraffe, and it's not me.  AND their wifi is flakier than anything that isn't stuck in a cone of Mr Whippy.

  1. Which always makes me hear Peter Kay saying "Two more Lamb Bhunas over 'ere!  Avanti!"

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