Day 22, Time with St. Paul

Today was much like yesterday in that I was having a very short ride. It was only about 35 miles to my destinations of white bear lake near the Twin Cities today. It was exhilarating to cross over the Mississippi and into Minnesota. I felt a great sense of satisfaction and having nearly completed my goal, however, there was also a tinge of sadness at the great adventure would soon be over.

Official greeter? He was about 10 feet away.Even with a late start I was able to make it to my cousin’s house by one o’clock. Paul and his husband allowed me to take shower and do some laundry before they treated me to a tasty lunch.

Then it was off to a whirlwind tour of both Saint Paul, the capital, and Minneapolis with My cousin. It was really great catching up with him as I don’t think we had ever really spent much time alone together before. I am so impressed by the fact that he has gone back to school after retirement to earn a PhD in geography. He has been working in the truly interesting field of vegetal geography, looking at the relationship between people and plants.

Of course I had to take a walk through the capital building. This was my third capital tour and perhaps the most impressive one yet. The layout is quite similar to the other Midwestern capitals I have been through with both Senate and representative chambers in the same building.

We took the new light rail St. Paul into Minneapolis.

It’s the famous Minneapolis sky walk back in there most the building. They are on level two and warm and giant maze of commerce kind of like a big mall. Folks Don’t need to go out much in the winter with the system.

To end the day I met up with my host of the evening, Mary. It is a vivacious woman with prodigious talents for organizing and constructing.

She Built her own house and restored a classic truck. She is also a friend of wayward animals with four cats and a dog. She also built a trailer so that she could take friends on long bike adventures with no profit choice. We spoke until late into the night. Thanks to Paul, Craig, and Mary for making it such a great day.

Now let’s talk little fact and fiction about Minnesota. First, despite my ardent second grade belief, The sodas in this state are really just normal size. There is nothing mini about them. However, the state does seem to live up in the moniker. There appears to be more swamps, ponds, and lakes than there is dryland.

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