Sunday, August 30, 2009

Spiriting away to Duluth

When we were to leave Duluth this past Friday, where we (my husband, my middle son, and my nephew) had gone for a 3 day/2 night stay because my son had to write his GMAT tests for his MBA program, I opened the curtains to fog. The highway by our hotel had disappeared.

So, rather than lurch through the pea soup of the freeway, we decided to drive up Boundary Road, where the fog was less dense.

The same view as above, but the day before.

On Wednesday when we started our adventure to the US, after we showed our passports and told the US border control officer, like he asked, the names of all the places each of us had been to in the last year and why we went there, we crossed the US border and did what so many residents of northwestern Ontario do when they cross the border-- we bought gas at the Trading Post at Grand Portage. This vehicle pulled up beside us as we were pumping gas. Is this supposed to be some sort of joke? Redneck Safari?

While in Duluth, my nephew and I visited Hartley Park, which is a large nature reserve right in the city. We went inside the Hartley Nature Center to escape the drizzle. This is a view out the window towards the lovely butterfly garden that graces the front of the building.

We walked one of the many trails in Hartley Park, but because there was a light drizzle we thought we'd take a short one. It lead to this large pond. What's amazing about this pond is that it is hidden; behind the trees lie the streets of the city. When you drive up Woodland Avenue you haven't a clue that this pond lies behind it.

Some children were out fishing. They were part of a day camp, I think. They didn't seem to mind the soft drizzle, either.

The day before, while my son was writing his GMATs, my husband, my nephew, and I walked a section of the Lake Superior Hiking Trail. The path we walked is part of the Magney Snively Trail section, which cuts through a beautiful old growth mixed forest of white pines, cedars, oaks, birches and other trees. It was magical.

We stumbled upon the trail after driving up Spirit Mountain, an ancient site of vision quests and 'sky burials',

to explore.


Merche Pallarés said...

My, my, you do take interesting trips!! About going to visit you and the rest of Finns in TBay, I'm sure one of these years I'll go! I'm dying to visit Canada before I'm a goner, ha,ha... By the way, WHERE exactly is Duluth?? I can't remember. Also, I didn't understand WHY the border officer asked where you had gone in the past year and why (it sounds like a police state...). I was afraid--since you went to the Middle East--that they wouldn't let you in! And, what about the car that came up and insulted you as being rednecks?? I'm in shock... Hugs, M.

northshorewoman said...

Hi MP, Duluth is also on the shore of Lake Superior, but south of TBay. If you visualize Lake Superior as a wolf's head, TBay is about where its third eye would be and Dultuh is at the nose. It's about 3 hours away by car, more or less, depending on the weather and road conditions.

As for the border guard, I guess he found us interesting, who knows? Our passports are full of stamps from countries from the Middle East, of course, and some of our names sound Arab, so, who knows? But in the end, after putting our passports through his machine, he waved us through.

The Redneck Safari vehicle just has that sign in its window. It wasn't meant for us. I guess they just want to advertise their business? I don't know.