A Conversation for North Dakota, USA
sacushman Started conversation May 24, 2005
I lived in North Dakota during my high school years and absolutely loved it. I found the people to be somewhat cold to strangers, but as soon as you ceased being a stranger (which didn't take long), there was absolutely nothing they wouldn't do for you.
People often remark on how desolate it is, but in my opinion, it's short grass prairies, badlands, sunsets and clear night sky (occasionally complemented by the Aurora Borealis) made it one of the most strangely beautiful states I've seen. No, it's no Alaska or Hawaii, it has no mountains or ocean, but if you are open to considering alternative forms of beauty, you will be amazed by this state.
When people say the state lacks diversity, they mean it is predominately Euro-Americans. However, many of its residents have held more closely to their roots than those in other places and it is not uncommon to hear the older farmers speaking to each other in German, Russian, Ukrainian, or Norwegian. Likewise, North Dakota's first nations, such as the Sioux, Ojibway, and Mandan add an important and underappreciated element of diversity.
Politically, North Dakota has an interesting history as well. Though it is now considered a very conservative "red" state, it once a bastion of Socialism and Communism in America and, in the 1930s, was the first state to hold a recall election for its governor.
If you like cold winters, pleasant summers, rolling prairie, and quirky but loving people, I can't recommend anywhere more highly than North Dakota, except, perhaps Ukraine. But that's another story entirely.
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