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This Time for Good

Story and Photos by Glenn Theberge

In June 1970, my seventeen-year-old wife Cathy and I visited Mountain Home to see her uncle, who was stationed at the airbase. Our drive from Massachusetts across the northern United States had been fascinating, until we entered southern Idaho. This twenty-year-old Yankee boy figured he’d never seen such a hellish place. The scorching sun was uninhibited and it torched the flesh. The sea of sagebrush and sandy dirt had no horizon. And the shade. What shade?

We went to the only place that rose above the flat land, the Bruneau Dunes. The sand burned my feet. It stuck to my wet skin, and my vision was obscured by the blinding sun and salty sweat. I struggled to the top of the dune with my cardboard “sled,” which did not work. I walked and rolled all the way down the hill. We went back to her uncle’s house for lemonade and to cool off.

“This has to be the armpit of the nation,” I said to myself and to numerous others. “Who in their right mind would ever want to live here?”

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