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Minneapolis Event; Bacio; Maserati or Porsche? Hammock Confusion; A Dear Chicago Friend; Popeye; On to St. Louis!

Suzanne’s Minneapolis event was her Awakened Living 301 presentation at Unity of Minneapolis. We had a large, enthusiastic turnout.  Rev. Pat Williamson, senior minister and Board Chair of Unity World Headquarters, welcomed her back after telling the congregation that when she spoke last year he was worried about having a “woowoo” speaker, but knew that when you have pre-judgments about something, there’s usually something to look more closely at.  After attending her “Making the Connection” talk at his church last year he immediately invited her back.  Thanks, Reverend Pat!

Our anniversary dinner was celebrated at Bacio, a very nice Italian restaurant on the west side of Minneapolis. (Appropriate, because bacio means kiss in Italian.) Suzanne dressed up in a slinky outfit and I donned a blazer (I must have misplaced the tie.) She had pesto-encrusted sea bass (corvina) and I had walleye (from Canada, since American walleye are not allowed to be sold commercially). The food was yummy, but I was disappointed in not being able to find my first choice, lutefisk, on the menu. As Loyal Readers will recognize immediately, lutefisk shares the top choice of dishes on my list with quinoa, kale and baluts. (Okay, maybe when I’m starving to death, delirious with fever, being tortured by the Inquisition, or otherwise mentally incapacitated…)

As we were leaving, we noticed these two cars just down from ours. I thought that hot-wiring the blue Maserati ($95,000 or so) would be challenging, but truly rewarding, especially when we towed it behind our motor coach. My Lovely Bride favored the white Porsche Boxster (a piddling $55,000 or so), but I convinced her that white showed dirt too easily. The second photo shows what we drove home with… sigh


Before we left Minnesnowta, MLB wanted to rig her hammock. Now back in the Old Navy, sailors slept in hammocks every night, but these days, hammocks are only for backyards and occasional camping trips. I have personally never slept in one, since my back prefers a firm surface. There was some difficulty in completing the rigging of Her Ladyship’s hammock between two trees, which were set much farther apart than the enclosed lines and webbing allowed. Rudy and Gretchen, our faithful Dachshunds, were kibitzing throughout this evolution. We finally had to “jury-rig” the beast (the hammock, not MLB) with 4 inch wide towing webbing from Wal-Mart. It was not the most glamorous setup, but Suzanne and Terri (who was laughing during this goat-rope) did get to rest for a bit until the rains came.

We continued east from the Greater Coon Rapids Metropolitan District in Minnesnowta through Wisconsin. We stopped for a night in Cheesehead Land (actually I am a Packer Backer, but we had no time to visit Green Bay), but the space assigned us at Devil’s Lake State Park had overhanging tree limbs at least a foot lower than our roofline, so we continued on to a private campground near Portage, WI. While pricey, it had full hookups and no trees to worry about, and the staff (two young high school girls, Emily and Natalie) were very friendly. (I thought to myself, “Where are all the guys? All we see working at campgrounds are young girls. The guys must still be working the farms…”)

Our next stop was at Naval Training Center Great Lakes for a few days. We are in a small campground right on Lake Michigan. The first two days were cold and very windy (the base is in the town of North Chicago, after all). Seems that Illinois has had the coolest, wettest June since 1905 (the effects of global warming again?) and everything is green, green, green. It is nice being around Navy sailors again. Great Lakes is a huge training center, both for new recruits and advanced technical schools.

Our second night’s sleep was spoiled, though, by a group of campers adjacent to our site. The irresponsible parents (and grandparent, who was the military sponsor) allowed their 5-10 year old children to run shrieking and yelling past our windows until 2330 (11:30 PM) when we yelled at them and called Shore Patrol (base security). Quiet hours here are 2200-0700 (10 PM until 7 AM). Then the adults had the audacity to sit outside gabbing and laughing for another hour until 0030 when I confronted the leading idiot, explained the meaning of Q-U-I-E-T Hours versus “less noise”, and convinced them to pipe down. As Suzanne says, I had my Human Meter set at 100 and my Spirit Meter down to 0… I was not “sending love” to those clowns. Fortunately, last night was quiet, except for the fireworks, which were not nearly as noisy as six kids’ shrieking at the tops of their lungs.

Suzanne has been doing daily readings by phone now that we have decent cell coverage, which is keeping her very busy. But the highlight of our Chicago stop was last night’s dinner with Catherine Chiesa at Stevens’ Restaurant in Gurnee, IL. (That’s Brad, the manager, at our table). Catherine is one of Suzanne’s best friends and biggest supporters, and whenever we’re in the area, we make a point of seeing her. We had a delicious crab and avocado tower for a starter. The ladies both had scallops with saffron risotto, grilled red peppers and grilled asparagus, while I had hazelnut-encrusted red snapper and creamed spinach. 

Catherine laughed at my choice of spinach, because of the Popeye the Sailor Man connection. We agreed that it is our favorite vegetable.

Today, July 4th, we will be making a very long drive (345 miles) from Chicago to St. Louis, Missouri for Suzanne’s next events. She will give the Sunday messages at the St. Louis Center for Spiritual Living (CSL) on July 5th and then present her Awakened Living 301 on Tuesday July 7th. Hope to see you there!

Finally, we want to wish all of you, but especially our wonderful nation, a Happy Independence Day. Let us never forget the meaning of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution that followed it. Also let us never forget the men and women who died to free this nation from tyranny, and that tyranny can easily return if we give up the liberties inherent in that historic and unique compact signed in 1776.

1 Comment

  • Anonymous
    Posted July 5, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    'Human meter 100, Spirit meter 0'. That's funny right there! Neither my wife or I have kids (just horses and dogs which are plenty of work). Seems that many times when eating out we find a nice, quiet corner only to have a family with unruly kids seated next to us! Karma or a lesson to learn?! :-). Brad


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