Accidental Tourist

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Accidental Tourist: What state is this again?

Local: South Dakota.

Accidental Tourist: How far across?

Local: Four hundred miles.

Accidental Tourist: That's huge!

Local: Yep. Right up there with Montana.

Accidental Tourist: Are there service stations?

Local: Now and then.

Accidental Tourist: I know it snows in the Dakotas. There's no chance this time of year, right?

Local: Unless it's July, there's a chance. A couple of our biggest blizzards happened in May and October.

Another entirely different breed of accidental tourist is the "long-term visitor." They're hapless knuckleheads who decide to transport illeagal drugs from the west coast into the midwest by Interstate 90. Their flawed research indicates that South Dakota's sparse population means there probably won't be much law enforcement on the highway. They become incarcerated long-term visitors after encountering the state's astute law enforcement officers and ever-curious drug-sniffing dogs.

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Paul writes about the Black Hills for in-flight airline publications, academic magazines, South Dakota Magazine, public TV, newspapers and websites. He is the author of five books, all Black Hills themed. He lives in the Black Hills. He's obviously no Renaissance Man with varied interests, but if the Black Hills are your thing, he's your guy.

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