Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Back in MN/WI!!!!

Being back in our “home” area has been a little surreal. In some respects, it does not seem like we have been gone two months, in others it seems like we have been gone much longer. It has been great to catch up with family and friends. Saturday we went to the house we rented in Menomonie to get our Jeep and pick up a few totes and things we had stored there the past few months. OMG, we have more stuff to get rid of! There must have been 6 totes there and more “stuff” I (most of it was mine) could not live without. We loaded up as much as we could and I went to pick up my 4 wheeler at a friend’s house.
Sunday we got together with my family, brothers, sisters, brother in law and a nephew. Although we may have seen each other individually throughout the year, we have not been together has a group in a year or more. Of my brothers and sisters, all of us retired within the past several years with the exception of the youngest. My sister Carol had retired but went back to help them out on a temporary basis and they talked her into staying a little longer and my brother Bob took on a part time job as he was not ready to totally pull the plug yet. 

We had not seen our nephew Marshall in several years. At 27, he has been traveling throughout the world the past couple of years. I know I am going to get this wrong but I think he has spent time in Brazil, Japan and China as well as a few others. While in Japan he met Claire who was from Paris. They married a few weeks ago and this was our first opportunity to meet her. She is a very nice and interesting person and it was fun to hear her thoughts and experiences from her first trip to the U.S.
During the week I spent time with my brother Bob doing yard work. Would you believe I actually miss having projects and doing stuff like that?!?!? We put some lawn edging and rock along the house and buried a couple of drain pipes. Meanwhile Barb went to work. Hey, someone needs to make some money around here! She helped out for the week before we head to Canada. She said it was great to see her friends, she does not miss some of the stress that comes with any job but she does miss the daily interaction with her friends/co-workers. One of her most frequently asked questions is “Don’t you get tired of being with each other 24/7?”  I am not sure how she answers that when I am not around but we both agree that is far from the case with us.  

Saturday we moved the trailer over to our good friends in the Spring Valley Wisconsin area. Greg and Gloria Anderson own a farm in that area and also own the lake home we rented for the winter. Sunday morning I went over to the lake house and loaded up our canoe while Barb went to the grocery store to stock up for Canada. One thing we will definitely miss is accessibility to a good grocery store. When we get there the closet grocery store is about an hour away. The prices are very high and the perishables leave something to be desired.  That afternoon we had crashed the Mother’s Day celebration with Gloria’s 5 children. All of them live within 30 minutes of their parents and I am always impressed at how well they all get along. The three girls are always doing things together and talk CONSTANTLY about horses while their boyfriends/spouses do things together each week as well. They are really a great group of people.

Sunday afternoon it was time to hit the road and head to Canada so we load up our gypsy caravan and headed north and head to Pasha Lake Cabins for some fishing! It is mid-May, the ice should be off the lakes by now right? Wrong! We get to the Duluth/Superior area and see ice! Well, maybe this is just an anomaly and we won’t see any more. Wrong! We spent the night in Grand Marais. We generally just park in the city marina and sleep for the night and get up early and hit the road. When we arrived in the marina there were 8-10 cars there with a bunch of teenagers on the dock. Barb, Daisy and I went over to investigate. As we approached, three of the boys jumped in the water and screamed like little school girls! They were doing the cold water plunge challenge which is a trend on Facebook right now. They ran for their trucks to warm up and the group quickly dispersed. Later that night while in bed Barb and I heard this horrible scrapping noise getting closer and closer. We look out the window to something I don’t thing I will ever forget. Going by our bedroom window we see a car drive by dragging a guy on a pump exercise bike with sparks flying everywhere. There we were, 11:00 at night looking out our bedroom window seeing this kid pumping up and down on this bike. We were laughing our @sses off! They left for a few minutes then here they come again, this time we look out and there are two kids riding tandem on the bike, sparks just a fly’in. Barb and I commented that that was something we would have done as kids too and settled back in bed. The scraping went on for about 30 minutes then all was quite. When we woke up in the morning, there next to our jeep…..yup, it was an exercise bike!
Ship coming in through the ice
Lake Superior outside of Duluth
Our overnight spot in Grand Marais
View north from the Grand Marais Marina

We hit the road and crossed the border into Canada without a problem arriving at Pasha Lake only to see…….ice! Every lake in the area still has 1-3 feet of ice on it. Fishing opens in a few days and there is no way the ice is going to be off the lake. Some groups are already canceling while some others are going to tough it out and fish some of the open rivers.

Pasha Lake still ready for ice fishing!

The next few days will be spent getting our RV site ready so we can settle in for the summer!




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