ROAD TRIP!!

May 27, 2020

On this day, the country’s COVID-19 death count reached 100,000.  We are in our 11th week of quarantine.  We had not seen Jami and Danny probably since Christmas?  They usually visit Alex once a month for meetings, but between winter weather and the pandemic it has not been possible since then.  We had not driven the car farther than 6 miles in 3 months.  We decided to make a dash for The Harn on a beautiful weather day.  This is the first blog posting in two months, the longest such stretch in a decade (you’re welcome) . . .

[Jami recently posted this on Facebook, on the highway along their property in Shevlin, Clearwater County, Minnesota.  Why yes, this is not a heavily populated area . . . ]

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[Alida, Minnesota, which we passed on the way, is walking distance from The Harn.  This country store is basically all of Alida, whose population has never been censused but is believed to be single digits . . . ]

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[The Super dropped me off at The Harn mailbox, and I videoed my amble up the driveway . . . ]

[Jami greeted us outside as we unloaded all the things they haven’t been able to pick up in the last 6 months, including her birthday presents . . . ]

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[Yay, my birthday presents!!]

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[Jigsaw puzzles seem to be the order of the day under quarantine . . . ]

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[We all wore facemasks to protect each other and to annoy the president . . . ]

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[A political button banner from Mom . . . ]

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[And a bottle of the grape . . . ]

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[A warm wrap for around the house in the winter . . . ]

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[A peek into their greenhouse . . . ]

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[A previous present from Mom . . . ]

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[Showing off recent plantings and to be planted . . . ]

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[Apparently this is an issue in their “neighborhood” . . . ]

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[I always thought the “fallen” tree in the driveway was dead . . . but it isn’t!]

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[Looking back towards the highway . . . ]

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[A worm sac!  Who knew?]

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[Planted flowers along the driveway . . . ]

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[Back out on the highway as part of the property tour (they have 20 acres) . . . ]

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[Where Jami was on the first photo.  You take a left in the distance ahead and there’s Alida . . . ]

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[Heading back in to The Harn, one of the gardens . . . ]

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[Jami points out new plantings on the short side of The Harn . . . ]

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[Talking to tulips . . . ]

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[The cistern for catching rain water, which they use for watering stuff . . . ]

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[We had a nice visit and lunch on the porch.  The porch photos by Jami . . . ]

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[Then it was time to head for home . . . ]

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[We didn’t go back the detoured way we came.  It involved a more exciting route by way of Zerkel, and Siri eventually caught on . . . ]

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[Zerkel, like Alida, apparently has never been censused either.  I believe it to be larger than Alida but the “downtown” was not on our route . . . ]

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[Alida and Zerkel were the only signs of communal living in the first 10 minutes of our trip . . . ]

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[Appears to have a successful crop of black dirt . . . ]

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[Ditto . . . ]

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[Before we left Becker County (just south of Clearwater County) we came upon this body of water . . . ]

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[It was substantial in size . . . ]

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[Shell Lake is substantial at 3200 acres, or about 600 acres larger than our own Lake Carlos . . . ]

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[At the 70-minute mark we finally hit signs of civilization again.  Butler was at the northern entrance to Otter Tail County and a relative monster with a population of 315.  The Great Pyramids of Otter Tail are featured below . . . ]

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[At the 80-minute mark we finally hit a town you would find on most maps.  New York Mills has a population of 1,200, about the same size as Osakis . . . ]

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[What’s orange and black and has 38 fins?  A: A school bus in New York Mills.  (You see, it’s a Finnish community – so if we had written 38 Finns, it wouldn’t have been funny . . . ]

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[Next up, Deer Creek . . . ]

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[We’re in the “neighborhood” of Alexandria now . . .

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[Pretty darn big . . . ]

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[They even have museum . . . ]

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[And then before Alex, the last town with at least a 4-digit population . . . ]

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[And 20 minutes later, home.  It was a 251 mile round trip (used less than a half a tank of gas).  The trip home was 120 miles and took a little over 2 hours.  We were surprised how few pockets of population there were along the way – it was an all nature drive.]

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[As now for something completely different.  Sister Gretch matriculated to the Corcoran School of Art in Washington, D.C. after high school.  Now in retirement she has returned to her avocation.  Below our brother Chris and her rendering thereof.  It was much appreciated on Facebook . . . ]

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[So, I wondered about her rendering of me . . . ]

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[Whad’ya think?]

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If you think adventure is dangerous try routine, it’s lethal.  ~ Paulo Coelho

Up next:  Whatever will be will be . . .

 

One thought on “ROAD TRIP!!

  1. I knew there was something crucial we were missing during these strange times. Your blog! Thanks!
    Very interesting.

    Like

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