we made it to South Dakota!

We’ve finally got some internet connection again (although it‘s slow…had to borrow the Best Western’s). The past few days we’ve spent in West Concord, Minnesota at Stan’s, a friend of Marcus’ dad. It’s a beautiful, flat farmland area, with little cell access. We left the Twin Cities area on Friday to meet up with Rick and Nate and the motorcycles so the boys could go play at Sturgis for a while. Concord was having their “Swiss Fest”. Complete with lots of Swiss food, garb, dancing, and even yodeling! We ate Bratwurst, and Sauerkraut, and filled up on Tourbalone chocolates and black forest cake. And it poured. The first time in the 54 years of this festival they’ve ever had rain. Maybe the Vermonters brought it with them! The crops (tens of thousands of acres of corn and soybean) were thankful, and judging by the large numbers of Swiss-goers, no one else seemed to mind, either. We had fun.

We spent a very peaceful night at Stan & Jennifer’s farm. The only noise we heard was from the windmill directly above our heads. “Back in the Olden days,” it used to pump H2O up from the well, but it now stands as a reminder and landmark of what once was. I guess we could also hear Chubs, the dog, occasionally lapping water from his dish. Chubs and Chase became pretty good pals, and will miss playing tag and copycat with each other.

Yesterday brought us West, to Mitchell, SD (home of the famed Corn Palace). We set up camp at a nice campground next to Lake Mitchell. Marcus, Nate, and their dad Rick all rode their bikes from Minnesota while Chase & I followed in the truck and camper. We met a woman from Denver with a FOH training business which intrigues me, as this is my background. I am a restaurant manager by trade and heart, but I can’t be effective as a parent when working 70 hours a week as a mgr. I don’t know how others do it! Susie, the wait staff trainer suggested Chef Louie’s for dinner. We enjoyed our meal, and after talking to the other campers, are glad to have dined there. Guess there’s not much of a culinary palate  here.

Speaking of taste, I have to talk about the coffee here. I admit, I’m a bit of a coffee snob. Even back home, I buy fresh beans, blend and grind and brew my own each morning. Just strong enough, just bitter enough, just right…Now, since being west of the Mississippi, the coffee has changed. Yes, it’s warm, and yes it’s dark. But where’s the taste? I’m convinced it’s just brown water they’re drinking. No flavor whatsoever, no aroma, nothing. Maybe that’s why we all move so much faster in the East? I’m going to have to investigate this further. I shared some of my brewed Green Mountain Blend with Stan, and he quivered a bit with his first sip. I think I know why now.

The boys headed out to Sturgis on their motorcycles this morning (along with hundreds of thousands of other bikers). Hope they have a blast! We’ll meet them back here on Friday and travel back to Minnesota together. Marcus is planning on demo-ing at the St Paul’s Farmer’s Market on Sunday, we’ll spend a few more days there, then we’ll back track to Wisconsin before making our way to Iowa.

Published in: on August 7, 2007 at 10:18 pm  Comments (3)  

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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I had to laugh at your comments about the coffee. GMCR should take note and send a shipment to the local stores, cafes, gas stations… hmm, I seem to remember a NECI alum working in marketing at GMCR…

  2. I don’t think I could go very far drinking hot brown water. Hey I posted your trip on the GPAA forum http://www.goldprospectors.org/newforum/forum_topics.asp?FID=12, hope you don’t mind. school starts again on Monday. Found a place on the beach, have it made.

  3. I do not believe this

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