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Thread: MN trip notes

  1. #1
    only bites when provoked
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    Default MN trip notes

    I'll update this thread whenever I have internet access and time.

    Yesterday/Friday evening:
    - Busy preparing for the trip - laundry, packing, etc.
    - Drove up to Mira Mesa on Saturday to go to a barbecue my friends had. Due to this, my last meal in San Diego was Korean barbecue, which is barbecue meat with rice, marinated fish salads (cephalopod with wood ear mushrooms! yum yum!), kimchi, and potato salad (adding a bit of American to the mix).
    - At the train station I took a picture of one of the hills to compare, and a couple in the city on the way. It's a bit of a tradition of mine before longer trips.
    - I could tell I was at the right gate because there were a lot of improbably-white people with bad sunburns. Like everywhere. I've never seen more people with sunburns in one place.
    - My flight was on Sun Country Airlines, which is a MN-based airline.
    - The flight attendant that handled the intercom on the plane had the most peculiar accent I've ever heard. I can't even start to describe it. She used some terms that were quite foreign. All the flight attendants were polite.
    - The girl sitting next to me was even worse, though. She talked on her cell phone interspersed with some kind of completely foreign terminology, in spite of using what I would describe as stereotypical exaggerated valley girl for the rest of it. I didn't talk to her, because I don't talk to valley girls.
    - What is with the midwestern airlines and charging for snacks? All the locals, once again, pulled snacks out of their bags when the drinks came around. I'm totally prepared for SoCal contingencies, but apparently not for here. I think everyone carries some amount of food here, so I might stock my bags and car with food to blend in better.
    - Later they came down the aisle with cheeseburgers in little plastic bags. I've never seen anything like this before. My mind is still reeling. It was pretty good, if mild. They were meat, cheese, and pickle on a plain bun. The condiments came on the side. I don't know if this was for varying condiment tastes, or if it was to avoid cooking damage.
    - I was going the wrong way on it, and it was pretty obvious. When we landed the flight attendant on the intercom with the over-the-top weird accent told us to have a safe drive home. That'd be quite a drive for me...
    - A couple other passengers were complaining about my hurrying off the plane and walking fast...right behind me...where I could hear them. I didn't bother to respond, though one of them said I was cute.
    - When I made it down to the baggage claim, file cabinet was there to meet me because I gave him my flight number. He took me to my hotel. Major props.
    - The front desk was empty last night, and the auto-checkin didn't work. They said all they had was twins, and I said "that's fine". I'm on the 22nd floor, which is a pretty nice view of the infinite plain all the way out to where the clouds meet the surface. I think I'm looking south-west, because if I look to the far left I can see some kind of building with two visible domes on top (like architectural mammaries), but I can't be certain.
    I 100%, N 88%, T 88%, J 75%

    Disclaimer: The above is my opinion and mine alone, it does not mean I cannot change my mind, nor does it guarantee that my comments are related to any deep-seated convictions. Take everything I say with a whole snowplow worth of salt and call me in the morning, if you can.

  2. #2
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    Sunday (Birthday):
    - Met up with file cabinet again, and he dropped me at the airport to get my car. He's my hero.
    - Ended up with a different type of car (worse average gas mileage, but better highway, so I guess I was in luck) in colors I wasn't really keen on, but I didn't pay extra for the upgrade because they were out of the type of car I reserved. Do these places do this all the time, or is it just me? I ended up with a Chrysler 300 for the price of a Charger, which is 120 dollars less for an 8-day rental. Can't complain about that.
    - Went to Mall of America. Failed to find what I was looking for.
    - Got lost looking for my car.
    - Made it to the hotel without getting lost for the only time on this trip, but thanks to the confusion at MoA, I was a bit late.
    - Confirmed meeting Varelse, and told her I'd be late. Bumped it by about a half an hour.
    - After getting lost once again (this construction season completely screws up both Google and my GPS), I finally made it there about five minutes late.
    - The food was pretty good as Middle-America Chinese Buffets go.
    - While there, file cabinet invited me to a barbecue on Monday.
    - Apparently I passed some sort of basic test, because her mother invited me back to their house.
    - Went for a walk with Varelse in the woods and marshy land behind her house.
    - Talked with her mother until 01:00 Monday morning. This might be my first experience of the long goodbye I've heard about, which is 2-3 times as long as a Chinese long goodbye, and 4-8 times as long as the SoCal variant (which is more common in So-SoCal).
    - Got myself really lost returning to the hotel. Took 1.5 hours.

    Monday:
    - Hung out at the hotel until 10:45, checked out, then drove over to St. Paul.
    - Met Lateralus and cascademn, then we caravaned over to downtown for the barbecue.
    - Ate my first bratwurst. It was delicious, but seemed like it might go good with horseradish or strong mustard. All we had was ketchup.
    - Watched people play air hockey and ping pong. I later tried to play ping pong, but I've never been any good at it. I caused the ball to fall 11 stories inside this huge enclosed atrium where we were playing...
    - Ate a hot dog after the threat of throwing it out was made. For the record, I didn't call it.
    - Talked about many subjects.
    - Ran really late on returning to see Varelse again before heading north.
    - Hung out a while, played some Portal, and booked a place in Duluth online.
    - Drove up to Duluth, got semi-lost a couple times. Thanks to geocaching, I'm pretty good at GPS navigation, so I was able to recover.
    - Found out where Minnesotans hide all their hills - they're up here surrounding Duluth.
    - Once I finally made it here and went to check in, the front desk guy said "Are you Eric?", and I said, "Yes...how did you know?". He said, "I have four reservations tonight, and I personally know the other three people. Also... *shows me his badge that was hanging on the wall* ... you have a memorable name." (same as mine, including spelling)
    - Slept pretty well. Forgot to turn off the alarm on the cell, though, so I didn't get to sleep in to recover as I had hoped. I'll be leaving here within the next hour or so to head to Angle Inlet.
    I 100%, N 88%, T 88%, J 75%

    Disclaimer: The above is my opinion and mine alone, it does not mean I cannot change my mind, nor does it guarantee that my comments are related to any deep-seated convictions. Take everything I say with a whole snowplow worth of salt and call me in the morning, if you can.

  3. #3
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Ha, very cool -- glad about the whole deal with Var and her mom (this is "must-see" TV at its finest)... plus am glad you got to hang with some other folks like Lat and cascade.

    I didn't know there were so many people in Minnesota.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  4. #4
    Wait, what? Varelse's Avatar
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    I'm just hoping you had fun here. And that I didn't hit you too hard with the pillow.

    We are not poets
    We have no right to make amendments

  5. #5
    will make your day Carebear's Avatar
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    If this trend continues I foresee that the day will come when every member of MBTIc is traveling to meet up with everyone else. At which point the whole traveling setup thingy collapses because nobody is home, so the only places members will meet are rest stops and security lines at airports.

    But until then I'll continue to enjoy reading reports from the different meetups.
    I have arms for a fucking reaosn, so come hold me. Then we'll fuvk! Whoooooh! - GZA

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varelse View Post
    I'm just hoping you had fun here.
    Of course!

    And that I didn't hit you too hard with the pillow.
    My head is just ringing a little, nothing unusual.

    Running behind due to phone calls and debating whether to stay up there, since they're set up for longer stays with more people at the places up there...
    I 100%, N 88%, T 88%, J 75%

    Disclaimer: The above is my opinion and mine alone, it does not mean I cannot change my mind, nor does it guarantee that my comments are related to any deep-seated convictions. Take everything I say with a whole snowplow worth of salt and call me in the morning, if you can.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolf View Post
    Monday:
    - Hung out at the hotel until 10:45, checked out, then drove over to St. Paul.
    - Met Lateralus and cascademn, then we caravaned over to downtown for the barbecue.
    - Ate my first bratwurst. It was delicious, but seemed like it might go good with horseradish or strong mustard. All we had was ketchup.
    - Watched people play air hockey and ping pong. I later tried to play ping pong, but I've never been any good at it. I caused the ball to fall 11 stories inside this huge enclosed atrium where we were playing...
    - Ate a hot dog after the threat of throwing it out was made. For the record, I didn't call it.
    Wolf, you spend too much time worrying about what people think, instead of just having a good time. I had to practically force you to play ping-pong.
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

  8. #8
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    I'm not very coordinated, and I know that, so I tend to avoid things that require coordination and fine motor control.


    I ended up choosing to stop in Warroad, which is where I'm at now. After a good sleep, I'll leave early tomorrow to cross the border into Canada, followed by crossing back into the US above the 49th (Northwest Angle), then later tomorrow I'll go back into Canada and return to the US below the 49th.
    I 100%, N 88%, T 88%, J 75%

    Disclaimer: The above is my opinion and mine alone, it does not mean I cannot change my mind, nor does it guarantee that my comments are related to any deep-seated convictions. Take everything I say with a whole snowplow worth of salt and call me in the morning, if you can.

  9. #9
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    Tuesday:
    - Duluth appears to be the midwest's version of San Francisco (some say Minneapolis/St Paul is, but that's only the cultural stuff). The roads even have the idiotic stop sign placement for which San Francisco is so well known. It's just a little dirtier, more industrial-looking, and has smaller windows due to the winters. Very steep and overlooking a bay.
    - Why are there homeless people (or people that look like them) in Duluth? If I was a homeless person I'd get the hell out of a place with weather like that as fast as I could.
    - The country between Duluth and International Falls is really scenic. It reminds me of Yellowstone and the High Uintas region in Utah. The only difference is that it lacks geysers and mountains...
    - The speed limits are driving me absolutely crazy.
    - Saw a deer standing by the road.
    - Saw a muskrat doing something by the side of the road.
    - The rest I saw was roadkill - a couple skunks, some unidentifiable brown thing, a deer, and something with feathers.
    - Ate a mushroom/swiss burger with bacon added, fries replaced with onion rings, and a watered-down pink lemonade at the Dairy Queen in International Falls. This is the first meal I've bought since Friday (people keep feeding me, and hotels provide complimentary breakfasts).
    - I questioned the sanity of my GPS receiver and decided to stay in the US rather than go through customs twice to cut about 10 miles off my trip.
    - Across the river in Ontario there was a town called "Emo", which I could see a few times while driving down the highway.
    - For the first time yet this trip, I found everything I was looking for when I went out shopping. Antiperspirant, razor blades, Vitamin Water, and Funyuns. The bag of Funyuns was larger than I had hoped, but endurable. This maintains my pattern of never buying antiperspirant when I'm in San Diego. For more than a year, it has always run out when I was somewhere else, then I go buy a new one there. Up until this point they always came from the same Rite Aid in Norwalk, CA.
    - The plan is to sleep and wake up early, so I can check out early tomorrow and have plenty of time up there to get the point and wander around some before driving south again. I hope to make it to Bemidji sometime tomorrow evening, but that depends on how smoothly the last leg of the trip goes.
    - I hate televisions and dislike motels with thin walls...
    I 100%, N 88%, T 88%, J 75%

    Disclaimer: The above is my opinion and mine alone, it does not mean I cannot change my mind, nor does it guarantee that my comments are related to any deep-seated convictions. Take everything I say with a whole snowplow worth of salt and call me in the morning, if you can.

  10. #10
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    My impression is that Varlese's folks are pretty conservative and protective. I'm impressed you passed the super secret mom test.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

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