Monday, July 30, 2012

Sunflowers & Galaxys & Our Flag

Today we are driving across North Dakota on state highway 2. The number of huge lakes and marshes is quite a surprise to us. The field crops up here look fabulous...wheat, beans, corn, and sunflowers. I LOVE seeing fields of sunflowers.

We left Duluth Saturday morning and spent the last two nights in Grand Forks, North Dakota. We knew there was a WalMart there; we have an atlas with their locations, and headed out for supplies after getting set up. We were a bit surprised to also see Menards, Lowes, Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, Dollar Tree, Kohl's, Famous Footwear, etc, etc, etc. That seemed like a lot of major shopping for a town of 52,800 people. As we drove around town yesterday enjoying the Red River, Town Square, and lovely parks it soon made sense. There are some small Minnesota towns just across the river so seeing those plates was expected; not expected were the large number of Manitoba license plates in every retail and restaurant parking lot. As we learned from our Canadian friends last winter, they realize significant $$ advantages when shopping in the U.S.

With all those opportunities, Rich made a major purchase last evening. Our big screen, pro truck driver GPS bit the dust a few days ago so after doing some research, rather than buying another GPS, he bought a Galaxy Tab 2 which comes with an amazing Maps app and he is considering adding an app called Co-Pilot. Has anyone used it? Now that we are both Samsung Galaxy users, I guess that makes us GGs...Galaxy Grandparents...teehee

Here are a few sights in Grand Forks...

The Red River of the North serves as the border between Minnesota and North Dakota.

This wildflower garden with sculptures was in Lincoln Park.

A paddlewheel fountain frames the entrance to the Town Square, a gathering space for community activities downtown, a block from the river.

In one corner of the lovely University Park stands this intriguing bronze sculpture named Porte du Nord. After taking photos of the telephone pole, railroad tie, and automobile tire on the front of this L-shaped wall, I walked around to find the inner walls covered with low-relief images of a dozen various object...fascinating.

Lastly, I want to share this photo of the Grand Forks Perkins Restaurant. The first time we noticed this was two years ago in Cheyenne, WY and have seen many on our travels since. High over Perkins restaurants they fly very large American flags.

I photograph American flags in small towns and large cities, flying from street light poles and on government buildings, adorning mail boxes and front porches; today I give a nod to Perkins for flying such magnificent ones.

Lovin' Life ~~ On The Road

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