10
Aug 07

Hushed silence

A Week and two days has passed now and today the remains of three of the missing are recovered. Navy and FBI divers are helping out. So Dylan and Kinzy and I, having an errand in Minneapolis, cross the river on the Third Avenue Bridge and make our way to Second Street just north of the collapse site. The crowds are not what they have been. Still, there are thousands. The Minneapolis Parks & Rec department has installed a dozen biffy’s. Trash cans overflow. The already dry grass is pounded into dust like the midway at a circus or the Minnesota State Fair. The police peremiter is established. City police officers and county sheriff’s deputies are standing under little white tents. Some workers at a steel milling plant watch us impassively from a large doorway as we come and go.


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James Hill’s Stone Arch Bridge, a grand curving railroad entrance to downtown Minneapolis now is a pedestrian and bike way. It has a spectacular view of downtown Minneapolis and the St. Anthony Falls, now nearly dried up in the drought. But all eyes are turned downriver. What we can see is the 10th Avenue Bridge. It is quite beautiful and it should be a delight to behold except that we’re not supposed to be able to see it.

THE DISASTER SITE PHENOMENA is as described in the news: large crowd of people so quiet I can hear the wind blowing across the river and the faint sound of Continue reading “Hushed silence” »


10
Aug 07

Drought – Minnesota Style

Back in the day … our kids were babies … we had a drought, the railroad was laying off people and the local economy in Havre, Montana, was not good. The FHA (Federal Housing Administration) owned 600 houses and was selling them cheap. Property values were dropping fast. Businesses were retrenching and folks were selling out and leaving town. That’s how I remember what a drought looks like. At least up in Montana.

In Minnesota, here in the Minneapolis-Saint Paul metro area, we are some distance from the agricultural economy. We know from lawns and gardens. I have very little of the former. A lot more of the latter. And we have a lot of trees on our property. The sun rises and gives us a cloudless day every day. The temperature rises to the 90s and then cools off in the evening. It is beginning to feel like Havre, Montana.

What doesn’t get watered, dies.  Continue reading “Drought – Minnesota Style” »


10
Aug 07

I-35W comes to the Midway

The hegemony of motorized travel knows no bounds. Sever one of its vital lifelines and it moves blithely to an alternative. Block the alternative and the alternative to the alternative is found. Does anyone ever imagine the possibility that maybe the trip didn’t have to occur in the first place?  Continue reading “I-35W comes to the Midway” »