minnesota

Friday in the snow

It’s another Friday. Down to my last month at work. Snow on the ground. Cold and windy. 

Nothing earth shattering in the news. Death, hate, war, celebrities, rich people, poor people, homeless people, bad politics, lawsuits, repeat. My crisis of the week? Didn’t have one. Actually I haven’t been out of the house all week. I’m reading a book called Up Like Thunder by Colin T. Nelson. A VIP’s daughter goes missing in Burma (Myanmar) and this Private Investigator goes looking for her. It is kind of slow moving but interesting. Lots of color on Burma. I’m about half way through, will finish it this week. 

St Paul is full of skyways connecting the buildings downtown. I use them all the time to get around out of the cold. They are all on the second floor of the buildings. From my window I can see one lone skyway way above the street that connects two buildings. It is thought to be the world’s first modern skyway, built in 1931. Merchants Bank and First National Bank merged and the buildings were next to each other. The floor heights were different so the skyway connects one building’s 16th floor with the other building’s 17th floor. It is a private skyway so, unless you work at the bank, you won’t be able to use it. It is the tallest skyway in the Twin Cities. And it is green.

I leave you with Poem VIII from Pablo Neruda’s Book of Questions:

What is it that upsets the volcanoes
that spit fire, cold and rage?

Why wasn’t Christopher Columbus
able to discover Spain?

How many questions does a cat have?

Do tears not yet spilled
wait in small lakes?

Or are they invisible rivers
that run toward sadness?

Ponder that…..

Friday’s Thoughts

October 14, 2022: First snow. Pretty early for that. 33 degrees F. this morning.

Angela Lansbury died this week. I spent years watching endless murders in small northeastern towns with her solving every single one of them. She was very good at it.

I’m reading a Dan Brown book – Inferno. You know Dan Brown, he wrote the DaVinci Code. Tom Hanks starred in the movie. I think Tom Hanks was in Angels and Demons as well. As I read the book, I picture Tom Hanks racing around looking for clues. But the thing I really love about the book is that the first half is set in Florence and then they move on to Venice. He races around Florence through the Boboli Gardens to the Pitti Palace and across the Ponte Vecchio and out into the Piazza della Signora. Then he works his way over to the Baptistery of St John next the grand Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. All places I have been to and remember fondly. I’m right there with him. And then to Venice where I remember standing in the middle of St Mark’s Square and a pigeon landed on my head. I hate pigeons to this day.

Øresund Bridge Credit: Amjad Sheikh

The New York Times had an article this week – 36 Hours in Stockholm. I read it with interest because I am toying with the idea of going there for just a couple of days. The article seemed reasonable enough. Museum, gallery, food, night life, shopping, parks, food, parks, more food. I always like to read the comments. A lot of them were not complementary. They listed all the things left out. The blandness of the country. The immigration problems. The crime. The lack of crime. And of course, the article failed to mention the Abba Museum. How could that be? I must admit none of it really lured me in. But I do live in Minnesota, so….  Probably not all that different. I might fly to Malmo and take a train across the 16 km Øresund Bridge to Copenhagen. Now that sounds like fun.

Speaking of food, I have my favorite Indian restaurants around town but last night I tried a new one called Spice and Tonic. I love pakoras so we ordered some vegetable pakoras to start with. They brought us paneer pakoras by mistake. They let us have the paneer pakoras for free and brought the vegetable ones a bit later. A pakora is like a fritter. The vegetable is mixed into a batter of chickpea flour, spices and water and then deep fat fried so it is crunchy on the outside. My friend kept calling them critters. But the paneer pakoras were not a hit with me. Paneer is the home-made cheese often used for Indian dishes. This was a long tube of paneer, battered and fried. It was just too much. Maybe if it had been made up into smaller pieces, I would have liked it better. We ordered Chicken Makhani, Chicken Tikka Masala, Vegetable Curry, and Garlic Naan. They were all delicious.