To Begin with...

The Little Apple is a awesome. Most people who live here will attest to how much they love it. After all, it's small enough for traffic to be no concern and big enough to have a Super Center Walmart. There are two things that drive this town to be the hot spot it is. One is the large military base a few miles out of town. (I've been learning military lingo) Second is the college - more specifically the football team. Purple is the predominant color in this town because purple is the Wildcat team color. Last week we had to get a new laptop and yes, they sold it in Wildcat purple. The house without a purple wildcat mailbox is the odd one out. If you drive by campus one in every five people will be wearing a purple shirt. The Homecoming game sold out at over 51,100 roaring fans all wearing purple (okay, some wore white). Half of the clothing section in Walmart appears to be devoted to purple. If you like purple, you really should move here.

People in this town are very friendly. Actually, Kansas people in general are very friendly. If you are driving on the back roads and pass another truck, they will  wave at you without fail. Walmart people in the checkout line may be painfully slow, but they are easy to engaged in pleasant small talk.

Oh, and to be girly for a moment, people in Kansas dress with a lot more style than people in Idaho did as a general rule.

Another great thing about this place is their thunderstorms. In the past three months we've been here, I've seen more thunderstorms than I have in my entire life combined. One particularly memorable one was when I was driving to work at 6:20am and watched the lightening streak form spiderwebs over the entire sky. Very impressive.

Speaking of natural beauties, when Paden and I first drove to Manhattan KS in June, we were greeted by more fireflies than I ever knew existed. Entire fields on either side of us twinkled with their blinking lights for mile after mile. When one was unfortunate to meet its demise on our windshield, its remains glowed for quite some time. I haven't seen that many again, but they are plentiful around here. I think the north west would be greatly improved by their presence.

Lest you begin to think KS is paradise, let me tell you about another kind of bug. My first meeting with the chigger was, ironically, while performing the good deed of helping a neighbor move into an apartment in our building. Hot weather is the norm here, so naturally I was wearing shorts and flip flops. Bad idea. When the Bible speaks of the worm that never dies, I'm pretty sure if you researched it, you would discover it is referring to the chigger. After first being bitten you might be tempted to think a chigger is not so bad. The itchiness is not even as bad as a mosquito bite and goes away sooner. But the story does not end there. When that little bugger bit you, it left its eggs buried in your skin. Yeah, I know. Creepy and oh so gross. About two weeks later, all of the sudden the itching is back with a mighty vengeance. This is the kind of itching that drives you crazy. No mosquito bite can even compare. The desire to itch permeates your every waking - and sleeping - thought for a full two days. Yeah. The fireflies may be beautiful, but the chiggers are fearsome.

You may appreciate a fine display of lightening or fireflies, friendly people, and even a bright, obnoxious shade of purple, but before coming here you must be ready to face the chigger.

You have been warned.


  1. How did you get rid of the chiggers? When we were adopting Danae I got some by sitting on a log outside in Tennessee! We had to use lots and lots of clear nail polish to suffocate the little guys. Gross I know!

  2. I didn't know there was a way to get rid of them so I just waited them out. It took like a week! Thanks for letting me know about the nail polish though, I'm definitely going to make good use of it!

  3. Haha, definitely put nail polish on the chigger bites, Jas! It suffocates them and makes them die - makes the whole process WAY less painful and obnoxious.


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