Walks with Ella: Minnesota

The ubiquitous storm shelter at the RV park. One of the more secure ones we've seen.

This fountain in Sauk Centre's Sinclair Lewis park seemed an odd combination of the design work of Norman Rockwell and the Taiwanese.

Another serene evening for people and ducks alike.

I caught this church at sunset. I think this one is catholic, but I had never seen so many flavors of Lutheran as there were in Sauk Centre, and undoubtedly, the rest of the midwest.

Gloaming hour at Big Sauk Lake.

The Lewis home in Sauk Centre

I never thought of the Mississippi River going much north of Hannibal, Missouri. Its headwaters are up near the Great Lakes. These locks and barges were where we crossed from Wisconsin to Minnesota at LaCrosse. We stayed in Red Wing at an Indian casino RV park, that was clean, inexpensive, well-run and had all the charm of a gravel parking lot.

Sauk Centre

Ella biting the lake water, as she loves to do.


George and Ella at a rest stop as we left Minnesota. This stop had a short trail and a tiny lake. We were on our way to North Dakota!

From Illinois, we headed north, through Wisconsin, crossing the Mississippi to Minnesota. Everywhere we went were fields of corn. We knew that Minneapolis has a lot of writers (What do you call a bunch of writers? A gaggle, a murder, a flock, a herd, a cackle, a parliament, a bale, a realm, a worship? I like this last one the best.), and most of the ones we know of specialize in Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Myth.

A Mallard that Ella (luckily) ignored

The lake had become choked with non-native plants. It has now been cleared and new native plantings are taking hold. My pioneer-girl heart soared, and Ella found a new place to pee.

A bit of blended architecture in downtown Sauk Centre. I love the car sticking out of the bar above. Ella was unimpressed.
Ella and I walked the trail by the lake (part of the Lake Wobegon Trail) and strolled the streets where most homes were at least 100 years old. Most had some unfortunate remodeling, which was as likely to have been the result of storms as of taste.
We planted ourselves northwest of Minnesota, in Sauk Centre, home of America's first Nobel in Literature: Sinclair Lewis. The city RV park where we stayed was on the lake, near the spot where Sinclair decided to write Main Street, a thinly veiled tale of life in Sauk Centre.

Wisconsin looked like Illinois at first, but pretty soon the flat lands with tidy farms and barns like this gave way to rolling hills. There was always corn and occasionally, soy.

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