Day 21 [St. Paul, MN – Prescott, WI]

MONDAY, JUNE 21, 2010

Happy Monday!

Though blogging from my phone works, I have found that sometimes the words come in as one jumbled paragraph, no matter how I try to format it. So if it does come in as one long sentence, please be patient…I’ll fix it up as soon as I can.

It’s about 11pm Tuesday night, and our tent is set up on the banks of Lake Pepin (some GREAT photos tomorrow.) Sunday night at the Cole household, we got packed up and headed out of St. Paul about 6:30 yesterday morning. Found our way back to the MRT and the Wabasha bridge, and it was all DOWNHILL from north to south – a real pretty bridge – and our Bridge #24:

Bridge24

Looking west from our Wabasha Bridge:

View from Wabasha bridge

Just south of the bridge, we stopped at a very cool Holiday convenience store (where they even in June carry firewood for sale).

Holiday store firewood

And just after we left the Holiday Store, it started to rain AGAIN! (And it had been such a nice day yesterday…..ack!)

One thing, though, about all the rain we HAVE experienced, is that when it does start to rain now, we’re actually kind of nonplussed about it, and we have a routine worked out that waterproofs everything we have. And again, isn’t that like life?….If you have faced a particular adversity, especially multiple times….and if that adversity comes up AGAIN, you usually have a process, or a strategy…a MATURITY that allows you to be better equipped to handle the familiar challenge.

(Kids take note….no matter WHATEVER challenge you’re facing….more than likely one of your parents has been through it before! Use THEIR experience – you might be surprised at the ideas they have!) Okay…..you want pictures? Here’s us in our stylish rain gear! (Okay, maybe Earline; but me….definitely not!)

Black rain coat

Jon in the rain

The South St. Paul Bike Trail was enjoyable as it traveled along the top of the levee – great views of the river – but it was very poorly marked. There were many forks in the road, and it was often unclear which way to turn. Even ran into this detour:

Closed St Paul Trail

(Ooooo – just saw a very pretty lightning bolt flash in the sky to the south. Wonder if I could catch a picture of it. Hey, wait! AH….you don’t suppose that it is headed THIS direction! Hmmmm.)

We weren’t the only ones on the trail – met this fellow toodling down the same direction:

Turtle on the trail

Even saw this flock of BUZZARDS beside the trail…..so who are THEY waiting for…..expired cycliists????!!!!

Buzzards along the trail

There is a bike trail under construction along Concord Avenue, and one of the locals said the plan was to build it all the way to Hastings (that would be wonderful). For now, though, it’s county roads for the MRT, and some of them have a LOT of traffic.

Went past this road bank FULL of bull thistles…….what??!!??

Side hill full of bull thistles

Can someone explain this to me? It looks to me like they were obviously planted…..to hold soil? But when I think of the thousands, or millions of seeds that these thistles will release….the neighborhoods around this area can NOT be happy!

Later on, we saw some beautiful landscaping with some of the development entry ways. Maybe some ideas for the DAH Nursery folks? (Deaf Anointed Hands)….(bet they’re fussing at the thistle people!)….

DAH Nursery signage landscaping example

DAH Nursery example left of sign

Later we met three gentlemen at the A&W, across from a WalMart, and one of them made a contribution to GHA….thanks!

We also passed this man-made lake, as a result of Lock and Dam #2:

Trike on dam ridge

Speaking of Mission Possible, one Biblical guy who did a lot of seemingly impossible things was Samson, like killing a thousand Philistines with a donkey’s jawbone, or lifting the city gates of Gaza. (Can you think of more?)

Well, these 2 silos reminded me of the last day of Samson’s life…..what do YOU think? [Judges 16:29-30] Like Samson, YOU TOO can do seemingly impossible things!

Jon pushing silos CLOSEup

Jon pushing silos

Arriving in Hastings, we had a chance to look over the bridge we had to cross. Here’s Earline studying the bridge:

Hastings Bridge coming up

Earline look at Hastings Bridge

What some of you may not know, is that Earline is terribly afraid of bridges, even with a car! So this Mission Possible tour is a VERY BIG stretch for her! To PROVE ALL things are possible, here’s proof – Bridge #25:

Bridge25

YOU CAN DO THIS!

You CAN do this thumbs up

Yes, ALL Things are possible!!!!!!!

TAH DAH on Hastings bridge

She was actually literally crying after we made it over the bridge, but SHE DID IT! (BTW, the arms outstretched photo was HER idea.)

(Wonder what the guy in the blue semi-truck was thinking?!)

We went over our first drawbridge as we went over the St. Croix River going into Wisconsin. And, yes, you could see right through the grate to the river below!

First drawbridge weve gone over

You can see thru

[Hmmmm….I did not count this bridge….should I??!!…..It was certainly bigger than a lot of the bridges we went over in Northern Minnesota!]

Also saw this interesting lift bridge next to the drawbridge:

Lift bridge over the St Croix

When we got into Prescott, Wisconsin, coming out of a gas station store were this father and daughter waiting for us, curious about the trikes. (By the way, there was a Dairy Queen in Prescott….number 6!)

Dairy Queen in Prescott

Even met Sheila on her bicycle just on the outskirts of town….Cathy Lemand, isn’t this your twin?

Cathy Lemand twin

Okay….back to the father and daughter at the gas station. Kelly (the daughter, who also owns the tattoo parlor in town) asked Earline if we had a place to stay (we didn’t) and she asked her dad if we could stay in the trailer home that she wasn’t using!

Wow! It was wonderful! (Yes, God is good….here’s some photos):

Trailer in box canyon

Box canyon

Notice the flat thing on the grass on the right hand side? It is a trampoline. They got tired of kids falling off, so they dug a hole, and made it safer for everybody. How about that!

They even had a chicken coop that creative Kelly and her sister had decorated up:

Colorful chicken coop

The chickens were so proud of their home, they thought they were PETS! [Creepy, TOO friendly pets, if you ask me! Ha!]:

Chickens thought they were pets

They even painted the outhouse (though Earline wasn’t so sure about using it, no matter HOW nice it was painted!):

Colorful OUTHOUSE

And the back story behind the little box canyon is extraordinary….it used to be literally FILLED with over 600,000 tires!!!! Here’s the dad, Dan Geister, who with HIS dad in a year’s time personally removed about 70,000 of the tires. He said local farmers built up berms with the tires. Eventually, I believe he said it was the county who brought in heavy equipment and removed the rest in 2 weeks.

Dan Geister and Jon

Many stories and laughs were exchanged, a good night’s sleep was enjoyed, and in the morning, they left a contribution for GHA sitting on the seat of one of the trikes!

THANKS guys!!!

May God bless you MUCH for your warmth and hospitality!

TGG,

jon

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