Monday, September 1, 2014

Happy Labor Day to My Minnesota's Superior readers

Do you suppose it's true that the 1% don't understand what Labor Day is all about because they're so busy working 24 x 7 x 365 creating Work Jobs for the rest of us? They've never had a hot dog, or brat or marched in a small town parade? Poor them! They probably aren't huge fans of one of my favorites, who has an interview in Saturday's issue of the guardian.

To help celebrate our year's worth of labor, and because The Daughter Person wanted us elsewhere while she and her bridesmaids had a bachelorette party, the Better Half and I took an overnight trip to Port Wing, WI. Up until recently, my experiences with beaches on Lake Superior had been limited to the cobblestone strands along Minnesota's North Shore. Then I visited the sand spit that runs out from Duluth. Now I've been to sandy beaches along Wisconsin's North Shore, which is also Superior's South Shore. They have lots of sand, with interesting rock outcrops in some places (and a few cobblestones in others).

Port Wing beach and boreal forest
Photo by J. Harrington

We stayed at a B&B that I can recommend if you want peace and quiet, a wonderful breakfast and, if you want, convivial conversation. Check out Larson Creek Farm if you've a desire or need to head in the direction of Port Wing. Coming back we took a different route and were surprised (at least I was) to find that there is a notable difference in topography within 25 or 50 miles east to west. Driving on the "blue highways," looking at forests, fields and swamps, both alder and tamarack, heightened my awareness of why Native Americans and European explorers traveled so much by canoe and of how much work much have gone into turning some of the forests into the fields and pastures we drove by. Settlers didn't have 8-wheel-drive tractors to pull stumps. That was back and heart-breaking work.

As a follow up to our trip and my new learnings about Superior, I discovered that Lorine Niedecker has a book by the title of Lake Superior. In lieu of a poem today, why don't you check the linked review. It looks interesting and it's too early in the season for Gordon Lightfoot's Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

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