Wild Goose Chase… And Other Attractions

Last week my sister Anna visited us for a few days. We had a great time seeing the Rochester sights. On Tuesday we visited Niagara Cave, about an hour south of Rochester. This underground system was discovered when a couple pigs fell into a sinkhole about 80 years ago. We climbed down a long, long staircase into the damp depths and followed our guide to the waterfall, then along a circituous route to see some living cave rocks. Carlsbad this is not, but for a cave in the middle of a field in Minnesota… it’s neat! Warning: lots of walking and stair-climbing involved.

Adjoining the cave is the basic putt-putt course, which Anna and I also tried out.

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Anna and I by the putt-putt course

After the long drive home, we curled up and watched Men In Black 3. The next day, Anna and I did what I call the Wild Rochester Goose Chase, taking photographs with the various goose statues around town. Back in 2009, the Art Center sponsored this brilliant project called The Goose Is Loose and now there are “art geese” at important Rochester locales all over town. Here is our first stop at the Olmsted County History Center:

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We took pictures with about 6 of the 18, so there are a lot left to go. One of the most beautiful is located in the patient cafeteria in Gonda, made with the help of the Mayo engineering department and with glass taken from Mayo construction site work. The “Goose Chase” a great way to spend a day and you can drive all over the city (though many are within a reasonable radius of downtown). We were so dedicated that we went all the way to the airport for a picture. The map for goose locations is here. (Note: the RCTC and UCR geese are not where it says they are. Also, the Custom Alarm goose is outside.)

I had a great time with Anna and look forward to completing the photo Goose Chase with my next willing victim – I mean, visitor. Who’s with me?!!

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5 Reasons Cross Country Skiing Is Great

1. Cross country skiing is a fantastic way to get outside in the cold snowy winter. Sure, it would be easy to curl up in the warmth of your house and play on the Internet. But it is much less depressing to go outside!!

This is a shadow image of me doing my favorite winter activity.

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2. Everyone gives you credit for getting great exercise! “Wow cross country skiing. That’s tough. It burns so many calories.” Etc. It’s awesome! For a short season you can bask in a reputation as an athlete.

What they don’t realize is…

3. Cross country skiing is good exercise that doesn’t feel like exercise! Its so cold that you don’t mind the sweat, and you’re working arms AND legs.

And you can admire pretty scenery like this idyllic frozen pond:

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4. I’m not one of those people who gets a rush out of exercise. Running? PUKE (that’s what I feel like doing when I run). I admire you hardcore people… Mom, Rachel, Mic… But I was not designed to run.

But cross country skiing makes me so happy! I think it must produce an unusual concentration of endorphins relative to the amount of apparent effort because I always feel so elated after a ski.

5. You see zany things while you’re skiing, like dogs with booties. Or these hardy Minnesota geese. Poor cold goose feet…

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So get out and ski while you still can!