Sunday, October 11, 2015



How quickly an evening passes when you sit down to that wonderful event called dinner with your daughter and her husband! We're at the  Corner Tableand the food is predictably wonderful. I'm about to plunge my spoon into thick mushroom soup topped with three gougeres. I consider myself to be a super gouger baker (it was my job to whip these up when I put in my Saturdays at the L'Etoile Restaurant ovens. But these meet my strictest requirements -- they are perfect.

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As is the evening.


We all rise early today. The young couple has to run someone over to the airport and I tag along so that we can then proceed to brunch. Not immediately though. It's so early that the brunch place isn't open yet. We use this gift of extra time for a walk along the great Mississippi.

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I think about how these are paths that are weekend walk targets for this Minneapolis young couple. I circle a lake, they trail a river...

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It is unusually warm. We comment how Fall is cheating us of the crisp autumnal air. But it's not a serious complaint. To be very warm in October in the northern most parts of the Upper Midwest is not a common thing.

Brunch. I remember eating a Sunday morning meal at the Bachelor Farmer some visits back. I loved it then, I love it today, especially (but not only) because it is that last time that we can sit together around a table and I feel as I do in the last minutes of any magnificent trip -- that I must take it all in, all of it, to the last drop, because it is soon to end and though in life, with grown children, you recognize that there will be many endings to fine meals and fine visits, it always feels a tad melancholy, even as I love home and have nothing but good things waiting for me at the end of the long bus ride.

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more serious

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less serious

We eat and talk about my plans (so many plans! so many!) their plans, their days, my travels. Your children are your best audience and yet I know I mustn't wear out that beautiful attentive listening stance and so I try to recognize the moment when we must leave the table and move on.

But not yet home. My bus doesn't leave until 4 and so we have time. We meander in and out of new stores that have popped up in this up and coming neighborhood of old warehouses and renovated brick buildings.

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I buy a coat hanger.

I buy glasses! Remember my dilemma about getting a second pair? Resolved! My girl gives great shopping advice: the frames are cheap and lovely. I'm excited!

And then we return to their downtown apartment with the lovely big window that looks out onto a city park...

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And what do I do? Of all things, I have to clear up some issues with airlines for distant trips, but important trips and so I work on that for a few minutes, but not for long, because we have one more walk to take and finally, just a few steps from the bus stop, a taproom to pop into and a goodbye beer to drink together -- hoppy, happy beer, something that is so fitting for this hoppy happy warm day.

Beautiful weekend, you wonderful hosts, you! Thank you. So very much. Sniff.

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And now I am on the bus and there are so many students heading back to my home town that there are two buses. I am comfortable, I have my books, magazines, memories.