Monday, July 20, 2009

Saturday July 18

#1 The highlight of the supposedly "scenic" train ride" unhooking the engine and re-attaching it to the other end!
#2 The Omnimax - scene of "the movie" part of the big birthday!
#3 The kite flyer using his spool of string and his DeWalt drill.
#4 On board the Vista King - a great cruise!
#5 Looking down the channel to the bridge
#6 A row of tugboats
#7 The highway bridge connecting Superior Wisconsin and Duluth Minnesota
#8 A 1000' freighter coming through the channel at dusk
#9 The freighter at the end of the channel
#10 A last look at a fun place

Well, the day dawned cloudy, but not rainy and supposed to break up and begin clearing today. Jerry went to find a bakery recommended by Bev and Jim and came back with a cinnamon roll which he served complete with a birthday candle and a birthday card to celebrate my birthday today.

If you remember the movie, "Planes, Trains, and Automobiles", we did the Pelly version today - "Boats, Trains, Truck and a Movie!" Being as we are celebrating my birthday we are going to be Tommy and Tammy Tourist. We started the day with a train ride on the Northern Scenic RR to Lester River. We decided that the day could only get better after that! It was NOT a scenic ride. The train did not even get out of town - just went down the track several miles and then back to the station. There were lots of kids on board and they enjoyed the trip, but there was absolutely nothing spectacular about it. However, the time schedule fit in with the rest of our plans for the day.

Next on the itinerary was the IMAX movie, "Mysteries of Lake Superior". It, too was not what we expected, but it was enjoyable. It was mostly about re-introducing and preserving sturgeon in Lake Superior.

Walking the dogs down by the Maritime Visitors Center on the waterfront we noticed a rather disreputable looking guy flying a kite out over the channel. The most unusual part of this is that he was using his DeWalt drill to fly the kite! He had rigged a spool of fishing line to the drill so he could let out the string and then retrieve his kite. He had about 2000' of string out to fly this 8' kite. It was a novel idea.

After that, we booked a cruise on the Vista Fleet Cruise lines for a harbor cruise at 5:30. We shopped for an hour or so until we could board the boat. That was a MOST interesting cruise. We went out under the aerial bridge which had to rise partially for us to clear it. We also came back through after a short distance up the North Shore. The rest of the cruise was around the harbor and we saw hugs freighters that were being loaded with grain and coal. General Mills has huge grain elevators in the harbor here. There are dry docks for ships and a large ship repair facility. We went under the large bridge connecting the town of Superior Wisconsin with Duluth. It was a most interesting trip and lasted about 1 ½ hours.

After the cruise we went to Little Angie’s Cantina and Grill for a shrimp fajita dinner. When dinner was over, there was another freighter coming through the channel so we grabbed the dogs and rushed down to the bridge to watch it pass through. It was a huge freighter (one of the 1000+’ long lake freighters) and it was fun to watch it come under the bridge.

On the way back to the campground we stopped at a Dairy Queen and in lieu of birthday cake, I had a tropical blizzard.

It was a great birthday and we were both exhausted when it was over.

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