“Nebraskans laugh at the good jokes, become resigned to the bad ones, and, in all cases, have always nodded knowingly to themselves, warmed in the knowledge that they have built the Good Life.” (David Hendee – World-Herald staff writer)
Every so often I find a place in my travels that demonstrates what a good life should be. You might know this feeling as a strong sense of inner contentment in the experience of now. So I would like to describe to you in the following paragraphs how such positive visions arose for me on our three day, road trip stopover in Lincoln, Nebraska this week.
As we traveled through eastern Nebraska on Wednesday, I gripped the steering wheel more tightly on this cold and windy morning drive along Interstate 80. As these heavy cross drafts caused my vehicle to sway sideways at times, I definitely seemed more alert to my surroundings. So as I drove on carefully that day, I began to notice that thousands of dead corn stalks on each side of the highway bended outward from the wind in unison.Most oddly, I now seemed to be daydreaming that this vast sea of corn hands were waving cordially to greet my sudden arrival and I would at some point emerge from this stalk strewn prairie-land as their powerful king. A few hours later in the distance to my left , I also took great notice of the towering dome of the State Capitol of Lincoln. No doubt its conspicuous presence amid the prairie was signaling like a protective lighthouse beacon to welcome us into Lincoln that day. I could only wonder during these moments why so many nice thoughts surfaced in Nebraska that first day.
After settling into our motel that weekday afternoon, we looked forward to finding quality time to spend with our former Florida friends Nicole and Paul and their new baby Luciana during our two day visit. But some brief text conversations with them heightened our concern that their fast growing infant seemed to be keeping them up at night. So as it seemed wrong for us to impose on their need for more privacy now given their current sleep deprived condition, I’d become ecstatic about the sudden prospect of having more free time to experience some leisurely times of interest on my own in Lincoln instead. So on the next morning, I made it a foremost priority to at last, tour the widely renowned “Great Hall’ of the Nebraska State Capitol interior.
Picture then the following masterpieces of human endeavor that demonstrate the Good Life” that one might seek in this State Capitol photograph set below. Imagine then the sheer exhilaration I felt quietly moving with six other tour strangers through an elaborately arched hall built of fine Italian marble lined with priceless tile mosaics and colorfully intricate murals covering seemingly every wall, ceiling, and floor in this grand hallway. Notice closely in these designs how certain soul uplifting themes would thereupon emerge upon close inspection such as the “Gifts of Nature”, “Past, Present, and Future Life on the Plains”, Cosmic Energy” and Highlights of Modern Civilization. Toward the end of our Great Hall tour, you might notice further why I stood in the Capitol Rotunda mesmerized by a captivating series of mosaics dedicated to the work of society to achieve virtue and the noble life. Set your sights as well on that spectacularly panoramic view of the Lincoln vicinity in the round that I saw from the four hundred feet heights of the domed Capitol Tower that happy day.