Tag Archive: Yale on the Trail: Study Break

  1. At Obama’s Iowa HQ, a ‘swamp’ is born

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    The front door of Obama’s Des Moines headquartersDES MOINES, Iowa, 7:15 PM – The floor of Senator Barack Obama’s Des Moines Iowa headquarters is soaked. Two canvassers walk in wearing thick-soled North Face hiking boots and you can see drops of water press out of the carpet around the edges of each shoe. Each volunteer that has come in out of the light snow and slushy streets tracks a tiny bit of the dreaded Iowan “wintry mix” into the office until the floor feels like what one volunteer calls it from her desk, “It’s a swamp, really.”

    Matt Hasvold – an old high school buddy of mine who works for the South Dakota State University Collegian (www.sdsucollegian.com) – and I have been here two days now and have determined there are a number of minor inconveniences that come with the state of Iowa. One is the cold. You try to stand outside for 90 seconds to top off your gas tank and your fingers swell up like hot dogs when you return to the heat-blasted environs of your car. And we’re both from South Dakota. We know what it’s like to drive through zero-degree weather and shovel snow in sub-zero wind chill conditions. We can handle the cold.

    Sort of.

    -Zack Abrahamson

  2. On the rocky trail, Dodd stops for Rocky Road

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    Icecream

    LE MARS, Iowa, 12:54 p.m. — Come west of the Mississippi and you can kiss your beloved Phish Food good-bye. The Midwest and the Plains are Blue Bunny territory, a vast steppe unclaimed by boutique ice cream makers like Ben & Jerry’s or Haagen-Dazs. Since the founding of Wells’ Dairy by Fred H. Wells, Jr., in 1913, Le Mars has been home to the company’s flagship ice cream brand.

    “Today, more ice cream is produced in Le Mars, Iowa, by a single company than in any other city in the world!” reads the town’s Web site.

    So it’s no surprise that we caught the Dodd bus pulling into the shop, factory and museum complex just off Le Mars’ main drag, Iowa Highway 75. Rocky Road, Senator?

    Zack Abrahamson