Rome, Prague, or Sioux Falls

We are planning a Christmas holiday in Brookings, South Dakota this year. Son and Daughter in Law will host in their new home. We will drive from western North Dakota, and daughter will fly to Sioux Falls from Tacoma.

Daughter texted me in exasperation last week to inform me that she could fly much cheaper to Prague or Rome than she can to Sioux Falls. That is the sad state of airfare costs in the Dakotas. where flights cost an arm and a leg if you fly out of the secondary hubs of Sioux Falls, Bismarck, Fargo, or Rapid City.

Well, I would rather be in Prague, too, but family is in Brookings, and that is where we will be. We will help daughter with her airfare so she won’t be out so much money. This made me think of what Christmas in Rome or Prague would be like, and something for us to think about in the next couple of years.

Where was the farthest from home you ever spent the holidays ? Ever been to Prague or Rome? If you planned a trip over the holidays, where would you go? Got any good stories about Sioux Falls?

44 thoughts on “Rome, Prague, or Sioux Falls”

  1. Collateral damage: daughter and wife were riding very crowded bus in Rome. Two men on either side of daughter got into a big argument and started spitting at each other.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. Morning! Well, no surprise to any of you that the furthest away from home I’ve ever spent Christmas is about 20 miles. Although I think that was Christmas Eve, Christmas Day has always started or ended right at the house.
    And of course Rome and Prague would be completely out of the picture. But that doesn’t mean I won’t some day.
    30 years ago, riding the train from Winona to Seattle, I think it stopped in Sioux Falls in the middle of the night. We were surprised how many people were at the station at 2 AM and we wondered if the train coming through was the most exciting thing to happen in town? But that’s all I know about Sioux Falls.

    I’ve been to Volga and Brookings!

    Liked by 7 people

    1. Go, Cossacks! (The Volga school mascot). On Sunday we saw an enormous jackrabbit sitting in the middle of the street on our way home from church. Jackrabbits are the SDSU mascot. It was a completely different color than the cotton tails we usually see, and had really long ears.

      Liked by 5 people

  3. I’m struggling with what the correct answer to the first question is. It depends on what you consider home. I suppose you could say that the Christmases I spent in Basel, Switzerland and Moscow, in the USSR were probably the two Christmases farthest from home in the sense that my stays in both places were temporary, and I knew that at the time. But my first Christmas in the US, in Cheyenne, Wyoming was really the first Christmas in my new home, although at the time it sure didn’t feel like home. I didn’t feel homesick at all in either Basel or Moscow, but I sure felt far, far from home that first Christmas in Cheyenne.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Been filling out forms and forms and then forms. About 1/4 of the questions are hard to answer. Falling through the cracks. I always think at that point in this complex world how many people fall between the cracks on forms.
      OT: daughter has a parishioner of about my age who lives with a diabetic man who is uncooperative about the disease. So she hides all the snacks that she loves in the perfect place to hide them for a man fo my age: the dishwasher

      Liked by 5 people

  4. 1. Probably the old Tomteboda Motel in Grand Marais for New Years’ Eve weekend about 20-30 years ago … or longer!
    2. No. Closest I’ve been to either is probably Berlin (to Prague) once in 1986. Great trip. Before the wall came down. Eery.
    3. Somewhere with snow and XC skiing and cozy cabins and good food.
    4. Hit town for lunch en route to Rapid City one trip and were treated to a precision air show by one of the service branches zooming around in various formations right over our heads. Not something one encounters every day.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I’ve been to far flung cities around the world including both Rome and Prague, but have never been to Sioux Falls. The furthest I’ve been away from home at Christmas is Springfield, Missouri while visiting my nephew and his family. If my friend and I ever get to go on our cruise to Antarctica (now twice cancelled due to Covid), we’ll be gone for 18 days in December, returning just in time for Christmas.

    Liked by 5 people

        1. I was wondering about that, but then I thought, perhaps the K in K-Two stands for Krista and Jacque knows something I don’t. I’d love to know, though.

          Liked by 2 people

  6. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    I have been to Rome and to Sioux Falls. Like Renee, Sioux Falls was the “big town” where we went shopping. There was also Sioux City nearby, but that was known as a “rough town” due to the stock yards, the meat packing industry, and the organized crime which grew out of the Prohibition liquor running trade that grew up in Iowa.

    We have been Rome twice, and I loved Rome. We experienced having our pockets picked by gypsies on bus #64, fabulous food, a daVinci exhibit of his inventions, and a lightening storm while we stood on cobblestones. That felt dangerous.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Oh, yes. Sioux City was always described as a rough town. Sioux Falls used to have a very small nuclear power plant on the east side of town. People think that may be why Luverne and Rock county had a high incidence of odd cancers. The John Morrell meat packing plant nd the Sioux Falls stockyards always provided a smelly welcome.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. Thieves in Rome cut my backpack causing some contents to fall out. I didn’t lose anything but the distraction cost 2 people some very expensive cameras. And as a well equipped traveler, my small roll of duct tape sealed the slice.

      Liked by 5 people

  7. We’ve driven through Sioux Falls numerous times, but for one reason or another, have never stopped there. We’ve always been on our way to someplace more exotic, like the Badlands, Deadwood, or the Black Hills.

    I’ve been to Rome, but never Prague. I have had dinner, though, at the glorious old Schumacher Hotel in New Prague, MN eons ago.

    Liked by 4 people

        1. No, we haven’t been there since it was sold. The last time we we we e there we took my parents there for their 55th wedding anniversary, I think in 1997.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Farthest from home: Renee country, Rhame , ND.
    Never been abroad.
    Sioux Falls: been there many times because my sister lived in Brookings. Later my mother was in a nursing home for many years. She died there. Only real story of interest is about Hwy I29. Half way between Brookings and SF the interstate makes a slight jog. People used to call it Excitement Curve.

    Liked by 5 people

  9. Sioux Falls and Rome. And New Prague. I don’t know if that counts. And as I’ve said many times here, one of the best meals I’ve ever had was at a winery outside of Rome. Like PJ home has been a lot of different places and with the exception of a very very unhappy holiday trip the first year that I was a young married, I’ve always been with my family on Christmas day. (And technically on the very very bad trip, I was with my family but I wanted to be with just wasband and not traveling. Way too long of a story.). It would be fun if I had YA with me, to spend Christmas day in a storybook kind of place. Bavaria with snow. Vienna with snow. Montreal with snow.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. i spent christmas in corona california with a very homesick travel companion
    it was hard
    since then (1973) i’ve been here unless family went to disney

    prague is wonderful but definitely foreign
    never been to rome although i’ve been to other italian favorite spots
    i love italy

    sewer falls makes me smile

    kind of a last bastion of civilization heading west or the first town that stays open past sundown heading east

    i’ve heard great complimentary comments have just never experienced anything that rings true

    kind of mankato stuck in south dakota

    nothing wrong with that just nothing to write home about

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Prague
    by Stephen Dobyns

    The day I learned my wife was dying
    I told myself if anyone said, Well, she had
    a good life, I’d punch him in the nose.
    How much life represents a good life?

    Maybe a hundred years, which would
    give us nearly forty more to visit Oslo
    and take the train to Vladivostok,
    learn German to read Thomas Mann

    in the original. Even more baseball games,
    more days at the beach and the baking
    of more walnut cakes for family birthdays.
    How much time is enough time? How much

    is needed for all these unspent kisses,
    those slow walks along cobbled streets?

    Liked by 2 people

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