My Minnesota Trip

I went back to Minnesota for a long weekend. We drove up to the lake house Thursday morning after I arrived. It was cold and rainy, but cleared in the afternoon enough to go out on the deck. The next morning (after being awakened by my dad’s Cavapoo Mitzi) we went into town for breakfast, then to pick up a repaired propeller and dream about buying new boats. My dad and stepmom have a motor boat, but want a pontoon boat because it seats more. Dad wanted one that seated 12. My stepmom said, “We don’t have 12 friends.” I said, “You will if you buy that boat!”

We went back to the lake and it was warm enough to go out on the boat. In fact, it got plain ol’ hot. We saw a blue heron on someone else’s dock. In fact, at first I thought it was a statue! (I’d also seen one flying over the car when Dad picked me up from the airport.) We had to tow in a pontoon boat that was having trouble. They were glad to see us because no one else was out on the lake! We did another boat ride after dinner, which was really nice.

Saturday (after Mitzi woke me again) Dad was awake before Sue, and he said, “There’s something you should see.” He took me out on the porch and just below us, a snapping turtle was laying her eggs! He doesn’t like snapping turtles because they’re mean and they eat fish and ducks, but he put a gate around the nest anyway, when the mother had moved off. Sue and I went for a walk while Dad powerwashed the deck. Poor thing–it took him all day. We sat on the deck, then down on the dock. We saw three loons, which Dad and Sue said is unusual because they mate for life. They think the third is the pair’s offspring. We went on a boat ride, then Sue and I took the paddle boat out. (Maybe it was the other way around.) My recumbent exercise bike really built up my endurance! I wasn’t even sore after! (Getting in and out is tricky, though!) Then we went to dinner at Horseshoe Lake. Was good! We went back, sat on the deck until the sun went down, then to bed.

Sunday we left after a good breakfast and another boat ride. We’d seen the heron and a younger one, too, every day we were there. I wanted a picture, but no luck. I saw him, but he was flying. Then we closed up the house, and drove into town because they were having a classic car show. You know I loved that. Then we drove down to the towns I’m using as a model for my Bluestone books. We stopped and took pictures, though I do have the town pretty well mapped out in my mind. I drew a map in my notebook as we drove back to the city. We unpacked the truck, then went out to dinner, then sat around the living room and they read the paper while I checked email. We saw another blue heron flying past.

Monday Sue had to go to work and Dad and I did a couple of errands, then came back to check email, then went to lunch in the adorable town of Excelsior, on Lake Minnetonka. We ate at a corner pub, on the sidewalk, and the waitress thought it was hot (it was 77). Of course, she could probably outlast me in the cold! We walked down to the lake, where people were feeding the Canadian geese, which apparently are fairly common. Then we went back to the house, I got my stuff and flew home (next to a guy who was 6’4 and about 250).

So I didn’t get a lot of reading or writing done, but I’m ready to go now!

Wildlife spotted:

heron

sandhill cranes

osprey

bald eagle

loons

tern

yellow tanninger

snapping turtle

deer

fox

chipmunks

squirrels

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