in the middle of the country

I spent yesterday travelling -- I am visiting my mother in Midwest College Town for a few days of heavy lifting. I am here to pack up her house -- she is moving to a smaller place without stairs, which will be much easier for her to manage. But she has not moved in over 40 years. You cannot imagine how much stuff there is to weed out and pack up. And she's deeply attached to most of it.

a few notes from the drive from the airport (about 40 miles) -- visible from the highway were:
17 churches
5 church billboards
4 tanning salons
4 gun shops
1 Starbucks

Starbucks is a really new feature in this landscape -- I was really surprised to see it there.