Irene North


Category: Nebraska

Maybe we are like this

On November 4, 2017, a letter to the editor from local resident John Gable spurred controversy in our town. It was vitriolic. I wrote about how we are better than this. Many of my friends and acquaintances would not agree with the racism, bigotry, and general hate of the “other” that has been occurring in the country.

But those feelings of hate have always been there, under the surface, and it’s rising. Apparently, we aren’t better than this and we need to talk about it.

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We are better than this

I woke up to my community in despair on Saturday. A letter to the editor in the local paper, the paper where I work at as a reporter, was causing a stir.

The letter, which many people have spread, can be seen below in the screenshot from the Scotts Bluff County Democrats. It is full of hate and ignorance. Its words make me want to leave this town, but I have spent two days thinking about where to go from here.

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She soothes my soul

Cinders stares off into the distance.

Sometimes the purring wakes me up.

It’s 4:30 a.m. Without opening my eyes, I can feel her head nuzzled on my collar bone. She’s only partially awake, but I must disturb her so I can begin my day.

Like clockwork, she comes near me at 7:20 a.m. She extends her left paw toward me for head scratchings and belly rubs before I head out the door.

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I was once a legend

Everybody wants to be somebody and, once, I was. For a little while.

The girls from Love two and three walked down to the Cather-Pound-Neihardt dining hall together. It wasn’t an unusual sight. Whoever was around at dinner time would eat together. Sometimes, they would hang out and wait in the TV lounge until a few people had gathered. Tonight, however, was different.

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Nebraska’s only rail tunnel

About 1.5 miles east of Highway 71 is the Belmont Tunnel, Nebraska’s only rail tunnel.

Reports on the Internet said the dirt road leading to the tunnel is rough. Clearly an understatement. My Chevy Aveo fishtailed whenever the speedometer was higher than 35 mph. As I slowly drove along South Belmont Road, it curved north, followed by a right-hand turn east onto East Belmont Road.

Drive over the railroad tracks and hike along the path on the east side. Most tips on the Internet tell you to walk along the fence that protects someone’s property, but why? You only get to look down at the tunnel. I was here to walk through it.

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