At the beginning of August, I was able to spend a week with my friend Cam and his family. They have lived in the Twin Cities area for many years, and have a lovely home with a back yard pool and Cam’s extensive garden. On this trip, Cam and I planned to visit International Falls and Lake Itasca, and to stop at as many Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives locations as we could, including a return visit to Gordy’s Hi Hat restaurant in Cloquet, MN.
On Tuesday, August 6, I flew from Washington, DC to Minneapolis on Delta. I purchased my round trip flight, along with my rental car, through Orbitz for $688. The package deal reduced the cost of the rental car by about $70. I had an 11:45 am flight from DCA to MSP. Mid-day lines for security at DCA were not too bad. Everyone was on board by 11:39, but we didn’t push back until 11:49, four minutes late. The flight was uneventful, and I managed to complete both the easy and the hard Sudoku puzzles in the in-flight magazine. As we approached MSP you could see Target Field (home of the Minnesota Twins) and the Metrodome (former home of the Minnesota Vikings and Twins) off of the left side of the aircraft, an old warhorse MD-90. Despite our late take off, we landed five minutes early. My rental car was a Mazda 3, and I was very impressed with the front seat legroom. My GPS took a while to catch up with the fact that I was no longer in Virginia, but it snapped into action just in time for me to avoid a traffic back-up on I 494, when it suggested that I exit onto MN 77 and then take MN 62 before getting onto I 35 for my trip through Minneapolis and into suburban Mounds View. (more…)