Thursday, June 10, 2010
On Tuesday this week, I had the opportunity to travel through western Minnesota – down roads I had never before traveled. A group of 6 were driving together to the visitation in Minneota, Minnesota, for the mother of my boss, LaVonne.
Our route was US Highway 212, to Minnesota Highway 67, and finally County Road 24. I had never been west of Chaska on US 212 and found the drive to be wonderful. We drove through towns such as Norwood-Young America (I’ve heard this unusual name for a town on the radio for years), Glencoe, Buffalo Lake, Bird Island, Olivia – “The Corn Capital,” Granite Falls – which is actually a nice size town - the Minnesota River runs through it; Clarkfield, and finally Minneota.
The route to Minneota is only 155 miles, but it takes 3 hours (when following the speed limits), due to having to slow down for so many towns and burgs. But the small towns were darling. Some had parks, some interesting water towers. And all had at least one visible church.
In the country side we saw beautiful, manicured farms, with gorgeous groves of trees and lovely yards. Many had horses. I hadn’t realized so much corn was grown in that area. Most of the farms had several large grain bins – and the small towns had large commercial grain dryers. We saw an Ethanol factory and a seed factory. The closer we got to Minneota, we saw huge turkey barns – lots of them. That was a surprise to me, too. Some of the land was very flat; other parts had big, rolling hills. Everything was green and lush.
On our return trip a female pheasant played “chicken” with us. She sat right in the middle of the road and tried to stare us down. Our driver had to slow down and drive around her. Too funny!
I enjoyed the road trip with my colleagues so much. It was different than the visiting that goes on at lunch or break time. Out on the open roads, one may spot something and tell the group something about it – perhaps jogging a memory from childhood, or from a former job. It was like “pop-corn” talk – jumping from this subject to that. It was so much fun!