Almost every time I write about something on my blog, it’s because I’m bursting with love for it. Especially for my travel posts–I get my motivation to publish from my excitement over those experiences.
I’m not bursting with love today.
I don’t even blink before proclaiming my love for Wyoming, and I definitely don’t hesitate say South Dakota was the absolute worst. I felt anxious, restless, and uncomfortable the entire time. I let out the biggest sigh of relief when we crossed the border into Minnesota.
Maybe it was the wide-open spaces. Maybe it was the distinctly passing-through-only feeling. Maybe I just felt let down–I wanted to like South Dakota, I really did, but I couldn’t.
Maybe it was Mount Rushmore (or, as Matt joked, Mount “TakeYourTime-Less”). You’d think seeing the one thing South Dakota has to offer would feel worthwhile, but I left wishing for my time and money back.
It’s just carved heads in a rock. And I knew that, of course. That’s what I was expecting. But I was hoping that I’d have another Egyptian Pyramids experience (in which I professed “I’ve seen pictures, I don’t need to see the real thing” and then was blown away).
Frankly, I thought the original rock formation looked way cooler than the sculpted formation. Why cut into something that’s naturally beautiful? And the Presidential Trail isn’t even pretending to be a natural trail; it’s literally a set of stairs to see the heads from a different angle.
One of our mantras for the trip was “When in Rome” (or Idaho, or Wisconsin, or South Dakota) to remind ourselves to experience each place fully, so when I saw that Thomas Jefferson apparently wrote the first American ice cream recipe, I figured we’d try it.
And it wasn’t that good. When ice cream can’t even redeem a place, you know something’s wrong.
I can tick Mount Rushmore off my list of visited landmarks now. And never return. Ever.
For more cross-country road trip posts, click here.