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I'm back and better than

I'm back and better than ever...with more juicy bits of orange!

Adventure recap:

Ran screaming from the office at 3:00pm after a 2 hour meeting to prepare for a 4 hour meeting with a client on Wednesday. Got to my apartment and Tommy and Eric called, already at my building and I haven't packed yet. Thankfully, Tommy is a very patient and laid-back guy and he and Eric hung out in the parking lot until I was ready. We hopped in the car and headed for Herbster, WI: home of The Beach Resort. None of us can remember if this is our 3rd or 4th year going up there, but it's a tradition for our tribe to spend Memorial and Labor Day weekends up there. The drive up was uneventful (apart from a scary soup-like fog), and we got to the cabin at about 9. Juggy, Susan, Erika and Austin were already there so we hauled in our bags and played some Catch Phrase and had some beer. Becca, who always bakes us the most insane goodies on these trips, was in Detroit this weekend and couldn't come up. But, that crazy bitch cooked us a whole batch of Monster Cookies (you have to see these things to believe them) and shipped them to us so they were waiting for us when we arrived! What a sweet potato.

At around 10, we walked over to the lake and had a fire on the chilly shore until the wee hours. Originally. I was sharing a bed with Tommy, but he started in with a wicked gas attack and I ran screaming into the other bed where Eric was. Eric is Tommy's oldest childhood friend from Kansas, and drove 6 hours to get to Minneapolis and then another 4 with us up to Duluth. So I was like, "Hello. Great to meet you. Tom's ass is rotten so scoot over and don't hog the covers."

Got up early because I was in the main cabin with Tom (and Eric, Erika and Austin -- Juggy and Susan had a separate room) and he can't sleep in to save his life. Tommy fired up the stove and made us some mad breakfast (also a tradition) of eggs, piles of bacon, and Russian pancakes. Tossed the football around with Tommy and Juggy, and then we decided it was kayak time. Tommy, Austin and Juggy each own one, plus Tommy rented one for Eric. Thankfully, Austin was feeling lazy so I got to go kayaking with the boys while he napped all morning. We put in at Meyers Beach, which was a fricking zoo. It's insane how popular kayaking has become. There were seriously about 20-25 other people putting in at that beach, most of them with the guided outfits from Bayfield. We paddled to the sea caves and had some good times exploring little tunnels in our kayaks. Juggy took pictures, which I'll probably put up here. All of Lake Superior is pretty stunning, but the area where we kayaked is particularly beautiful: sheer cliffs with lush forests on top; sea green water against the orange-tinted sandstone; moss and ferns growing out of the wet stone; it's breathtaking. The day was beautiful, too. The clouds and cold of the previous day disappeared and we had clear sky and tank top temperatures the whole way. Paddling out we were with the wind, so it was a breeze. Coming back was horrible, though. I have never paddled harder in my entire life. At one point, I set my paddle down on my lap, looked at the sky and just screamed, "FUUUUUUUUUUCK." There were points where I was paddling with all my might, and not moving one damn inch. My shoulders are still sore. But, we eventually made it back to shore and were relatively unscathed. I got some color on my face, which is a nice way to end the summer. Of course, the painful sunburn on my neck and chest are not-so-nice, but I'm trying to look at my glass as half-full.

We went up to Fish Lipps in Cornucopia, hoping they'd have karaoke like they did last year (and that we could reprise our version of Bohemian Rhapsody). Alas, there was no karaoke, but were pacified by darts, pool, Golden Tee and some crazy game I've never heard of called Egg-Venture. You have a pistol and you have to shoot things without hitting the good eggs. It was the best game ever! We played it until somehow we broke it and it wouldn't take quarters anymore.

We got back to the cabin and dorked around for a while before starting a fire and blazing up some Johnsonvilles (mmm...Cheddarwurst). Since we had been drinking, and were sedated by bratwurst, jumping into Lake Superior seemed like a good idea. For those who don't know, jumping into Lake Superior is rarely a good idea. Mostly because it spends a good part of the year frozen solid, so even by August it's often not a bearably warm temperature. But, as I said, it seemed like a good idea. So we did it.

We each only lasted about 60 seconds (I lasted longer only because the temperature of the water sent my body into immediate shock and I peed right then and there. So, I had to finish before I got out of the water) and then ran, literally screaming in pain, back to shore. There, we screamed in pain some more as we tried to navigate the rocky shore in our bare feet, trying to get to our towels as quickly as possible. Once we warmed back up it was okay, but it will be a long time before I do that again (translation: next year and a few beers).

Tommy actually slept until 9:30, which is some kind of record for him. He whipped up some snausages and eggs, and we all sat around and did the Sunday crossword (Juggy always brings copies of all the previous weeks' crosswords for everyone) while Austin read Gimpel the Fool to us. We watched a wicked storm roll in, and Tommy and Juggy saw lightning strike one of the trees near the resort. Once the storm had died down, everyone decided to go to Duluth to check out the Glensheen mansion. Since I just went over Memorial Day weekend (and have been like 4 times and have the tour almost memorized), I stayed. It was nice to be alone for the afternoon, listen to the rain and the lake (which sounds like the ocean), and get some reading done. I got about halfway through my book and worked on some crosswords.

When they got back, they were hungry (as was I) so we headed to the Cranberry Inn in Herbster. Some neighbors at the Beach Resort recommended it; according to them it was the best Italian (pronounced, Eye-Tally-In) they ever had. Skeptical, but willing to suspend our disbelief that good Eye-Tally-In exists in Northern Wisconsin, we tried it. It was good, but verrry garlicky. For example, I ordered a fettucine dish with shrimp and a garlic sauce. When it arrived, it looked like the sauce was made of garlic, a few seasonings and piled high with some type of minced nuts (I assumed pine). I took a few bites, it was pretty good. I asked the waitress what type of nuts were in the sauce. She replied, "Those aren't nuts. That's all garlic." We all just looked at each other, knowing that the cabin was going to experience another wicked storm. Except this time, the thunder was going to be inside.

We got back to the cabin and played some games: Catch Phrase, Loaded Questions, and Who Stinks? (also known as, Light a Match! or Did That Smell Come From You Or From The Bowels Of Hell Itself?). Finally, the rain stopped and the boys took their farty party back to the bonfire while I went to bed.

I was out of there by 10:00am so that we could get back to Minneapolis in time for Eric to make the 6-hour trek back to Kansas. Stopped at the Amazing Grace coffeeshop in Duluth (yet another tradition) where I proceeded to forget my purse containing my wallet and palm pilot, thus locking up my crown for 2002 Jackass of the Year. Of course, I didn't realize I had left my purse there until we were nearly home. Thank God for cell phones. I called the coffee shop and confirmed that my purse was safely in their possession. Then I called Juggy, Susan and Austin's phones and left them all messages in case they hadn't left yet. I thought for sure I was going to have to drive back up there this week to get it, but amazingly Juggy called a couple of hours ago and said he got my message and was picking up my purse. Yay!

Now, I'm headed over to Mama's house to do laundry, help Patrick with a paper he's supposed to be writing, and hopefully watch Lord of the Rings.

Posted September 2, 2002 5:04 PM



can you please post the 'no pulp' version?

i've said it before and i'll say it again:you are a whore.