Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Tuesday, April 26, 2022, MN, WI

A lot has happened over the last week and now I will try to reconstruct the events of my days since last Wednesday.  I volunteered for the Food Truck event at my building on Wednesday before loading up the car for a trip to Stoughton. After dropping Frisco off at his second home with Ben and the family, I headed south.  The weather was lousy- cold and rainy - but I opted to travel that day so I would have plenty of time to visit people in Stoughton.  It rained constantly, but came to an abrupt stop as I got to the Mississippi River in eastern Minnesota. That was nice because it allowed me to see the ice dams that formed frozen waterfalls in the high rocky cliffs along the road side.  I wasn’t able to take a photo but I found this one online to borrow. The ice wasn’t this thick and was scattered over a mile or so along I-90 near Dresbach.  There was no rain until I got to Sparta and then it was rainy all of the way to Stoughton.

My first stop was to get hugs from Pat and Tracey and it sure felt good to see them again.  I didn’t stay too long as I was getting tired after the long day and Thursday was a working day for Pat. It was also nice to see Dawn, my cousin-sister-girlfriend and we had wine and talked until I couldn’t keep my eyes open any longer.

Dawn and I had lunch with her Mom, Wanda on Thursday and I can’t remember the last time that I was at Wanda’s house.  This was a blast from the past, as the house looks pretty much as it did back in the 1960s when they bought it and when I used to babysit for them now and then.  Wanda just celebrated her 90th birthday in January and is physically challenged by Osteoarthritis and macular degeneration but her mind is sharp and we had a very nice visit in spite of her recent sad news of a cancer diagnosis. As we were hugging and saying our goodbyes, she sang the little song, Que Sera Sera “Whatever Will Be Will Be”.

Back to Stoughton and I headed off to see Susan, my childhood friend who recently became a widow and relocated from Georgia back to Stoughton.  She has a lovely condo at Vennevol, a senior housing complex on the west side. We sat on her patio and had a great visit then went to town and had dinner at the Viking Brew Pub.

I spent the evening with Pat and Tracey before going back to Dawn’s house where she had some friends over to watch “Murder and Mayhem”, a weekly event for that group of friends.

Friday started out with a meetup with Jonnie for breakfast at Sugar and Spice - another good chat and family connection.  Dawn went grocery shopping and I dusted and vacuumed her house in preparation for a gathering that she was having on Saturday.  After that, I was off to the Pancake Cafe to meet up with my classmate, Doug, for a beer and some good conversation that we missed out on last August, as he was unable to make it to our class reunion.

I hung out with Pat and Tracey again and we had carry out fish fry for dinner.  After dinner, they gave me an early birthday gift - an Apple Watch.  Dang, did that make for a big surprise! It will take a while to get used to wearing a watch again and a learning curve to figure it all out, but I think I will grow to love it. 

I headed to Pat’s house first thing Saturday morning and we had coffee and watched the news.  The weather was gorgeous that day and I didn’t even need a jacket to walk over there.  By 9:00 he and I were both ready to get moving and he started working on detailing his truck and I worked on detailing his front flower beds.  That felt so good to be outdoors and doing something that I have always loved. When we finished those projects, he helped me to clean the remaining road salt from the carpet of my car.  And then we both needed naps after that.  He made quiche for dinner - a bacon and cheddar and a spinach with feta cheese. Yum! It was a lovely day, especially when I could spend it with my son.

On Sunday morning, I had coffee with Dawn before packing up, picked up some pastry from Fosdal’s Bakery for breakfast and headed over to Pat’s house for the morning.  He had something going on that afternoon and I was heading north to Pat and Roger’s house.  

The weather had changed again with high winds and low 40° temps - back to winter again.  Patty and I bundled up and went for a walk together but the wind could have blown us over a couple of times. I definitely needed a good walk after a few days of eating way too much and not walking at all. It’s always nice to be with them.  We had Old Fashioneds for happy hour and lasagna and salad for dinner, then watched “Pure Country” with George Strait in the evening.

After a nice walk again on Monday morning, I packed up and hit the road - so ready to get back home to my own space.  An unexpected change has come about me - a yearning to be in my own space - that I never used to experience.  In the past, I have been a ‘go getter’ and being away from home didn’t really bother me, but I have sure noticed it the last few trips that I have made.  It was great to see my buddy Frisco again and he was happy to get back home too.