Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Lessons from a two year old....

I traveled to my ancestral homeland of Minnesota for Memorial Day weekend. Well, Friday night I only went as far as Prescott, WI, where the St. Croix River meets the Mississippi River. The St. Croix River is the border between Minnesota and Wisconsin from Prescott on up north, through Hudson and Stillwater. Friday night I slept on my brother's boat. (Click on any of the pictures to make them bigger.)

On Saturday, my siblings (see a picture in an earlier post), their spouses, and I spent most of the day on my sister's family boat, on Lake Minnetonka. We beached the boat in a nice bay (see right), and stood in the water enjoying margaritas and Coronas and laughing. I haven't laughed so hard in ages, it seems. We pulled up to Lord Fletcher's later in the day--a boat-in restaurant/bar.

Sunday morning I went with my father and nephew to Osowski's Orchard, the flea market just outside of my hometown. It was a ritual, whenever I returned home, to visit my grandparents at the flea market. It was kind of a senior center for them. I'm not sure if I just have faulty memories of what this flea market used to be, if it has really gone down hill in the past few years, or if it was just an off day, but the place now seemed empty and decrepit. My grandparents died years ago, so I haven't been out there in a long time.

At one point, it was advertised as the largest flea market in Minnesota. My memories from the 1980s and 1990s is of a place with big crowds, a go kart track, tons of junk for sale, and my grandparents holding court with their friends inside by the bar, enjoying beer and listening to polka or country/western bands. It had this frantic carnival feel, with the vendors set up in front of their campers, transient sellers of new and used junk. Seems a little different now.

Couldn't even get any fresh mini-donuts!

Above is the bar where my grandparents used to hang out with their homies and peeps. But the place didn't seem as alive as it used to be.... I was kind of hoping to see my grandparents there, but that may not have been a good thing for me.... Too "Sixth Sense" given my health experience, if you get my drift and I think you do.

My nephew Ole had the right idea. He spent quality time examining every toy, thinking of what he could do with that toy if he only had a quarter to buy it. Totally focused on the moment. No dwelling on what the place used to be--but what fun could be had right now, and going forward! He ended up purchasing his first mobile phone, shown above. Yes, he has the right attitude. You can't judge a flea market from a distance, whether physical or temporal. You have to look at everything as it is right in front of you, right then, and you can't be afraid to examine things in isolation, breaking a table of junk down into its elemental pieces of sub-junk, and picking things up and examining them and wondering what you could do with it. When you do that, you start to see some pretty interesting items amongst the castoff debris.

Anyhow, I laughed long and hard quite a bit over that weekend. And spent some good, slow time at the flea market looking at some cool stuff.

That's my head. As far as the abdomen and the rest of me goes, I'm "therapeutic" with the blood thinning medication I'm taking for the clots in my lung, which means it's working. And on my last two runs, I set post-surgery personal bests, one for average speed over 5k (back into single digits per mile!!), and on Sunday for distance ran. Feels good. My only pain is around my incision, and only when I cough or try to do sit ups. That's normal given that they cut through all my tissue and muscles in that area.

I think this is becoming a blog of recovery, rather than one of illness.

Off to the farm to work with Nourish. I'll take pictures.


Anonymous said...

Fun post. That kid isn't waiting for Godot!!

Kristin Weiman Skrien said...

Dan, wish I would have known you were visiting MN, or I could have met up with you! You probably blogged about it, and I missed the entry. I feel the same way about the Flea Market. I worked there PT for awhile in high school and you're right...it was a happening place. That was a long time ago and now it's a wasteland. Nothing like it used to be. Sad in some ways. Glad you had a nice visit and that you're doing so well. Maybe see you at Tami's benefit?? Sure would be great! July31st