Some of us from Cuisine at home decided to get something to eat after the Race for the Cure. So there we are at a local diner, enjoying pancakes, eggs, bacon, and probably one of the best hashbrowns I’ve had (hashbrowns tend to be undercooked or burned, these were perfectly cooked and crispy).

As we are eating, I notice a peculiar, unpleasant smell…but can’t exactly place it right away. Imagine my surprise when I turn around and see a woman sitting at a table next to us…SMOKING!!! Inside the restaurant! Welcome to Iowa. Apparently smoking is perfectly legal and acceptable here inside restaurants, bars and clubs. I must’ve been spoiled by the anti-smoking laws in the last few states where I have lived.

My next encounter with inside smoking was inside a salsa club (that’s right, I can’t find salsa dancing in upstate New York, just to find a weekly salsa event in Des Moines!). By the time I left the club I reeked with smoke; my eyes were irritated; I could hardly breath. Ah!