Thursday, April 24, 2008

Thursday

I went to the Mayo Clinic yesterday with Regis. He’s having some testing done to see why he’s lost so much weight in the last year. It’s an interesting place to be: stories hang in the air over the heads of people in waiting rooms, like wisps of smoke. Once I thought I saw a little play being enacted over the heads of an old couple; scenes from their lives and people from their past. Tiny, shadowy figures with soft voices. Maybe I read that somewhere.

The most stressful part of the trip was riding the Fritsch rocket on the way home. We did 80 mph between Rochester and Faribault, passing everyone in a blur of tail lights and dust. I wish I could draw because I see myself plastered to the seat with my hair straight back and my cheeks puffed out like I’m in some wind machine. I like to drive leisurely and look at the ducks and the farmers and other things. I also like to stop occasionally and get a cup of coffee and a cookie. You can't stop when you're trying to break a land speed record because then all those people you worked so hard to pass get ahead of you.

Next time we go to Rochester, we're going to the visitor's center where they have a museum about the Mayo brothers. That way when people ask us what we did on our vacation, we'll have an answer. A student in Joanne's class was talking about China the other day and I asked him if he knew that the Great Wall was the only man-made thing you can see from the moon with the naked eye. He asked me, in all seriousness, if I had been to the moon. Joanne said, "She doesn't even go to Mankato without packing a bag." Very funny. I have a reputation for sticking close to home.

In case you live in a more temperate climate and want to shed a tear for us, this is from Paul Douglas’ weather forecast in the Tribune today: Minnesota: Land of 10,000 Weather Extremes. Close to 80 degrees Wednesday with air conditioners blaring, the happy tinkle of the Ice Cream Truck. By Friday evening Minnesotans living up north may be knee-deep in slush. Sandwiched in-between: thunderstorms boiling up Thursday, a raw Friday with a cold rain, maybe 1-2” of precipitation, enough for a Flash Flood Watch to be issued for northeastern Minnesota and northern Wisconsin.

Lovely. I drove home in a downpour with thunder and big cracks of lightning. One thing I’ve noticed lately is that people who are normally mild-mannered and good-natured are getting downright ugly. They are snappish, selfish, mean-spirited, and overly sensitive. The same goes for me. We all need to sit in the sun and cook on the grill and let our toes have air while we sip margaritas.

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