Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Logbook: The End of the Road Trip

Endroadtrip1After leaving Bismarck on Sunday morning, the road trip entered a somewhat surrealist phase. Although we’d already driven 800 miles through wide-open spaces of nothing, the Hi-Line and Badlands had been interesting in a bizarre yet captivating way. Continuing our road trip on I-94 was just plain boring, and we were in an almost trance-like state as the miles rolled by. We were briefly amused by driving through a thunderstorm and stopping to film the amazing cloud formations that it produced, but we mostly just drove and drove and drove... To Fargo, ND where we stopped for the night. Yesterday morning we spent an hour in the small but excellent airplane museum, challenging each other with trivia questions about the many WWII airplanes on display. Then, it was back in the car and on the road to Minneapolis.

Endroadtrip2Although neither of us are shoppers, we are both capitalists and decided that a visit to the Mall of America was in order. What a place... What an experience! In essence, MOA is four “normal” malls stacked on top of each other and houses every kind of retailer known in the universe. We were amazed -- and, frankly, a little bit creeped out -- by the raging consumerism. While it is “good for the economy” for people to be out buying stuff, we had trouble convincing ourselves that it was “good buying.” Jeans selling for $150 and just plain “junk” everywhere... Who knows? After walking the entire mall, we figured maybe we were just being crotchety old men and decided to take the light-rail down town for dinner. We picked Hooters as the perfect way to end our guys’ road trip, and I took the opportunity to embarrass Greg one more time by having the girls ambush him for a photo as we were leaving. This morning we had some time to reflect on our trip and our time together before Greg headed to the airport for his flight home. The Hi-Line Road Trip is now finished, and we are both wiser and better for it. Thanks, Greg, for being a great companion on The Voyage of Macgellan!

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