Hampton Inn, Eau Clair, WI – On Friday morning, after a great sleep, I walked down the hall to the breakfast room and one of the staff was putting fresh fruit on the counter. I looked around and was surprised that there were no omelettes this morning. Just as that thought went through my head, a woman named Barb came out of the kitchen and asked, “Would you like an omelette? I can make them for you – how many do you want?”
I said “Two please. Make one for my friend Ruth as well.”
She said it would take about twenty minutes as they were all-in “western omelettes”. With their robust coffee and yogurt we had such a good breakfast – but I’ve told you before how much I love the Hampton Inns.
We took our sweet time getting to the Mall of America just outside of Minneapolis, Minnesota and spent a couple of hours in our favourite shops, including Chico’s, Calvin Klein, and, of course, Nordstrom too. The Mall of America is owned by the same people who own the West Edmonton Mall, the Ghermezian family. The family moved to Canada from Iran in the 1960’s and is one of Canada’s biggest immigrant success stories, converting their rug business into the real estate and construction empire it now is. The West Edmonton Mall, in Edmonton, Alberta, is the largest shopping center in Canada. In the USA, the mall, which is now 33 years old, was the largest in the USA when it opened: now it’s the second-largest, behind the massive King of Prussia Mall outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The sales are on and Ruth took advantage but of course, the one thing I just had to add to my wardrobe, at Nordstrom, was not. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how a shopping fail becomes a shopping win. I may have paid full price but when sales come around on this super skirt that I found, it would certainly not be a seasonal left-over!
Ruth has a friend in Minneapolis that we
would spend the night with, and it took us a while to find her address. The problem was she was on 38th North, not 38th South and as you can imagine, that makes a pretty big difference. Elaine is having problems with her balance and had never been referred to a vestibular physiotherapist for her condition. We we searched out the web until we found a list of people for her to call on Monday to get an appointment with a physiotherapist. I’ll keep you updated on what happens.
This morning, we left Minneapolis around 7:00 a.m. to head out for Winnipeg. A stop at McDonald’s for their good strong coffee and an Egg McMuffin got us on Highway #94 towards Fargo, North Dakota. We had a short stop for lunch at a small cafe in Grand Forks, then we rolled into Winnipeg around 4:00 p.m. We had luck with the weather: we drove through one shower around Fargo and then we had a thunderstorm in Winnipeg around supper time but we were already off the road and safe at the Webster’s by then.
We’re spending the next couple of nights with Sharon and Lynn Webster. It is such a treat to spend time with them. They’re such good people – and they’re spoiling us with good food too! We had a delicious dinner of steak, new potatoes, fresh peas and a salad. As you may know, strawberries are my favourite fruit and we had Sharon’s famous Strawberry Pie for dessert. How lucky for us!
The Websters have a beautiful home on the Red River, just a stone’s throw from the water!
Tomorrow we are off to at the Grand Pines Golf Course, which borders on the Belair Provincial Forest – one of Manitoba’s 14 provincial provinces. The course is close to the Webster’s cottage on the east side of Lake Winnipeg and only an hour away from their home here. I can’t wait to get my clubs out to play, and tell you about the course and, maybe, about our game.