As a season ticket holder to the Paul Bunyan Playhouse, I was back in Bemidji on Wednesday for the opener of “Dancing at Lughnasa” (a fantastically complex play with superb performances in challenging roles), so Bethany and I decided to get together for a walk down our beloved dirt trail along Lake Bemidji.
We started out seeing not one, but two, goose families, one with tiny goslings and one with older ones. They were pretty cute, and it was a great day for moms and dads to take their kids out to the lake — whether human or avian.
I had missed seeing the birds of Lake Bemidji on our walks. We saw a lt of them.
It was really hot Wednesday, but one of the benefits of walking on the trail is that we’re continually shaded by the trees. It was a beautiful and fun walk with, but other than the goose babies, it was relatively uneventful. There was, however, this shirt Bethany came up with.
“Do you want a shirt?” she asked, from behind me, on one part of the trail where I go down and she goes up.
I said no even before I turned to find her holding a dirty Vikings T-shirt, and told her I was surprised she even picked it up. Someone must have been hot on their walk one day!
There is much I do not know about the outside world, I admit. But I am often curious, and I often think about getting guides to trees and birds and such.
After our walk, I dropped Bethany off at the Pioneer and killed the hours before the play. I thought it was going to be a long wait, but it was nice to do stuff in a leisurely manner. I had some lunch, took a call about my dad’s life insurance, went shopping, went to the library to check out a book I’d forgotten to bring with me, and sat on a bench downtown and read the book for a while before going into the Playhouse.
It was a great day, and a great evening. I like going to the Playhouse on opening night, partly for the afterglow party (I’m a journalist; free food is always a draw), but mostly because I get to meet and talk to the actors, and I have to say that this cast is probably the friendliest, from top to bottom. Every single cast member was so personable and nice and happy to be in Bemidji, and at least half of them came up to me and started a conversation. It’s also cool that most of them have not been at the Playhouse before; the only cast members I had met were Katie Tiegen and Leslie Ball, and the latter I knew only because I’ve attended her Ball’s Caberet at the Southern Theatre in Minneapolis.
It was really great to walk with Bethany again. We still talk regularly, and visit sometimes, but I miss the day-to-day that we were used to, whether we were walking or not. And every time we walk, we slip right back into the mode of walk-and-talk, like we’d just walked the day before. It occurs to me that while Bethany wrote a goodbye post when I moved from Bemidji to rural Erskine, I neglected to write one myself, so I will soon write a post on what I’ve been up to, including lots of outdoor photos!
Maybe one day Bethany and I will meet at Itasca State Park. We always said we wanted to get out of town for a Trail Mix walk.
This is the only photo of me from our walk, taken when I handed Bethany the camera before jumping over the wall of the 10th Street steps to continue along the trail. “Are you kidding me?” I said, laughing, as she lined up her shot. She assured me that she was not shooting the scaling of the wall, since those pictures were never flattering.
I wasn’t aware of this project, but noticed the signs along our route (not the dirt trail, but once we emerged from the trail and turned around to walk back on higher ground).
We did somewhat the longest route, which goes around the lake and through Diamond Point Park, on our best days, when we used to walk regularly.
I will leave you with some flower photos!
I think I’ve taken this photo more than once. But I love lilacs, and they’re starting to leave us.
As I write this, a day after our walk, it is thundering wildly outside and the rain has just started to fall. It’s a good thing we walked yesterday, because we got to have a lovely day for walking and I get to stay inside and enjoy the thunderstorm!