Thursday, October 23, 2008

Big Pumpkins

I took a quick trip to Minnesota and back yesterday. My mission was to rendezvous with Sally in Winona, pick up Grandpuppy Sammy and bring him home for the weekend. Sally and Uncas are off to visit best friends Lisa, Brian and "Curly" (Caiden) in Seattle. Anyway, what a great little jaunt. I had forgotten how beautiful Western Wisconsin is. High rolling wooded hills and deep fertile valleys. It was typical fall day, kinda coolish with a brisk wind blowing. It seemed like everyone was out and about. A least everyone in the animal world that is. I traveled in the company of hawks and geese and before long a few Bald Eagles. As a matter of fact, one eagle almost had a close encounter with my windshield. Here and there I would spot groups of wild turkeys forging around harvested corn fields. And, one group (or are they called a "Gang"), not wanting to outdone by eagles, flew across the road in front of me. In spite of what they said on "WKRP in Cincinati", turkeys do fly. These guys were heading to a clump of trees on the other side of the road. I immediately started thinking of "Why did the Turkey Cross the Road?" jokes and the same with Eagles. Lucky for you, I couldn't come up with any. I saw an occaisional deer (even a few live ones) and many racoons who had given their lives for "Why did the Racoon Cross....." jokes. And a few "Dead Skunks in the Middle of the Road". So much for the Fauna now the Flora. My last post was devoted to "Little Pumpkin" Saffron in her Halloween outfit. Above is a picture of some "Big" pumpkins that I ran across on my trip. Unfortunately I didn't have anything the show a size relationship. Believe me, these guys were a lot bigger than Saffron. I'd say the big green one one the right was at least 4 feet long (tall?). I guess some pumpkin farmer was just showing off his handiwork. It doesn't take too much to entertain me while I'm on a drive so the pumpkins were a real highlight until . . . I crossed the Mississippi River. As soon as I came off the bridge and my front tires hit Minnesota asphalt, I was greeted by the best fall color I've seen this year. The high bluffs were covered with reds and golds reminiscent of Michigan's Upper Peninsula or Vermont and New Hampshire. The conditions just weren't good enough to get any photos that would do justice to the view. Just take my word for it or look at some travel brochures from the places I mentioned. All in all it was such a pleasant trip that I plan to do it again on Sunday. This time I'm going all the way to Minneapolis on Sunday and returning on Monday. Maybe if the weather conditions a favorable, I can take some nearly breathtaking photos.