In 1983, I moved to Sunburg, a small rural town where some old guys still speak Norwegian. This area is known as the Glacial Ridge Trail. There are rolling hills covered with farmland, lakes, woods, and wetlands. There are deer, pheasants, ducks and geese, crows and robins. This agricultural region is dotted with small communities that are both humble and proud of their Scandinavian lineage. Ya, you betcha!
It is cold; winters are harsh. But that seems to bring people together to get warm and talk, and it makes us tough. We survive the common enemy together and there is a bond between us because of it.
When spring comes, oh! the warm sun, flowers, grass, the smell of dirt; it has been gone for almost 6 months. Snow melts, trees bud, birds come back. Everyone comes outside after hibernation and Minnesota is "God's Country" again.
Summers are meant for lakes and we got 'em. There are over 365 lakes in Kandiyohi County alone. Well over the boasted 10,000 in the state. There is a thriving tourist season with resorts, fishing, boating, and chillaxation.
The humidity is high and when it gets hot it will take your breath away like a sauna. There are only a few weeks where air conditioning is mandatory. Otherwise, evenings can be cool enough to need a jacket and sit around the campfire. It is often calm winds which is nice, but that brings out the Stupid mosquitoes! Bring SPF-30 and bug repellant, you're gonna need it.
Fall is my favorite time of year. The tourists and snowbirds and bugs are gone. The mornings are crisp, trees burst into color, locals begin preparing for winter. There are county fairs, harvest is in full swing, and everyone is busy. Lots of farm machinery, tractors and semi-trucks on the roads. Geese and ducks fill the skies headed south. Days, you can wear a sweatshirt or light jacket and feel comfortable. Frost comes, mornings get darker, winter is coming.
Winter. Cold. Very Cold. Layers of clothes, boots, gloves, hat, coat - mandatory. Air bites anything exposed. Cars won't start. Everything cracks, nothing bends. People walk with small steps like tight rope walkers because of the ice underfoot. Your next step could send you to the hospital.
There is much to do in this frozen world. Ice festivals, hunting, ice fishing, snowmobiling, skiing, and gathering INDOORS next to a fire where it is warm. We dance and eat and drink, play games, go to school, and work on creative projects, arts and crafts. Most play hard on Saturda