This past week was the 10th Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and this past weekend was the 10th Anniversary of when the levees failed. All of which is a reminder that Dennis Hastert was right.
It is little understood elsewhere that Wisconsin (once Ouisconsine) was once part of France, and then Britain, and then later became the United States as part of the Northwest Territories. There the resemblance to Louisiana and parts south ends, with our temperate zone and snowy wetlands filled with wolves and foxes and eagles, as well as fish and turtles and the occasional shy little frog—hippity hop. And let’s not forget our Trillium and Wood Violet and Lady Slipper—our own temperate zone orchid. We love our dairy products, and daily bathing rather than mummy skin and keeping the body fresh.
Louisiana’s wetlands (or bayous?) contain a lot of Snakes, of various types and venoms, and if you get down to the Core of it so do, apparently, their cousins in California and Connecticut and Philly. Here in Wisconsin, there’s just one poisonous snake, the Timber Rattler. That one gives just a nip to say you got too close and it’s best to stay on the Trail. And let’s not forget the oil rigs and refineries. 😉
There is an old Story about Abraham Lincoln and his family. Not the family he raised with Mary Todd, but the family that raised him. It seems that while Illinois is the Land of Lincoln, Mr. Abraham was born elsewhere—Virginia actually. The family had to pull up stakes and head West, a bit too much trouble back where they came from. While the story of a humble childhood is well known, Mr. Lincoln did rise to the “highest office” in the Land. He freed a lot of People, as they say, and did more than possibly anyone else in the history of our Nation to promote the furtherance of Democracy in North America.
To a lot of people in the Upper Midwest, Mr. Lincoln really does exemplify the American Spirit. He did things for himself, he pursued education, worked to protect his community, and lived simply even at times when money was flush. I’ve lived all over the United States, and I can say without hesitation, that vision of what it means to be an American or live in America is not shared.
Back to Virginia, of course, the Land of Lovers, has its fair share of wetlands, with some wild horses and oil rigs. There’s likely a sign somewhere that Mr. Lincoln slept or visited some places, I’m not actually sure myself. I supposed there are those who return to the Homestate, and then there are those, like Mr. Lincoln, who walk away and don’t come back much. I suppose, if like Dorothy Gale, one finds oneself simply picked up and deposited in a strange place, it does take some time to learn the difference between an Emerald City and the Wicked Witch’s castle. And when one finds the Big Striped Balloon, there is a flush of relief and the winds blow one back to where one started out, with familiar faces and familiar ways of doing things. An adventure had and over, hopefully, just a strange and mysterious dream, with no harm done, and some stories about a wondrous and unbelievable Land.