View From My Apartment 7
So. This week I’m going to write about last week. And last week was vacation. And, ah, what a vacation it was.
My friend Ben was getting married in a lake lodge resort in northern Minnesota, so we decided that we would make a go of it and get there a few days early to enjoy some peace and quiet. And did we have the quiet? Oh, yes. We did.
We left New York City at 6 am..and who would think New York would be noisy at 6 am? We landed in lovely Minneapolis around 10 am, picked up our rental car and hit the highway. All the way to…The Mall of America.
That’s right. The Mall of AMERICA. The mall that represents America. I guess. I’m not sure what the thinking was, but then, it’s three floors and the size of the Pentagon, so I don’t know if there was any thinking involved. I remember on 9/11 that it was evacuated for fear that it too would be attacked after the Pentagon and the World Trade Center.
We stopped at Macy’s to get our wedding present..could we have been bothered to get one in New York? No. So. We got them a present at Macy’s in the Mall of America. We went to the counter to get it wrapped. The woman took the present, we chose the number and then we waited. And by we, I mean all three of us. The woman behind the counter sort of stared at the box, we stared at her. Slowly, but, surely, she started pulling paper. Then looked at it all again. Then cut it. Then pulled some tape, looked at it, and then applied it to the package. Twenty minutes later…
We were on the road! Heading north! North into the woods.
It was a little scary.
I lived in Minneapolis for four years. And the first north I had ever gone was a north suburb. I had heard of the ..beauty.. of Minnesota, but I had always scoffed at that idea. How could it possibly be more beautiful than Minneapolis? Than St. Paul? I mean, come ON.
Traffic disappeared as we went north. It fell away as we got off the major highways. And then…the color…so much green. And mixed in with the green…yellows, oranges, reds. I had forgotten about Minnesota in the fall.
And then. Two rainbows. Two RAINBOWS. Within minutes of each other.
Ok. I admit it. North Minnesota is prettier than the Twin Cities.
The Lodge that we were going to was fairly expensive, more expensive than my traditional home away from home..the Super 8. But, meals were included and it was supposed to be nice, and we don’t spend money like that normally, so…what the hell.
Oh. My. God. The place, first of all, was BEAUTIFUL. We got a tiny cabin, i.e., cute, right by a lake, and so every morning we wake up with this view…of water…of trees…just beauty. We had our own fireplace! We had our own hammock! People…this was awesome.
The lodge served two meals, included in the price of admission, breakfast and dinner. Breakfast had fresh baked goodies as well as eggs or pancakes or waffles. And the dinner…the dinner. It was a four course dinner. Four. And if you wanted you could have five or six courses.
And let me tell you…the Filet Mignon…it was heaven in the form of medium rare beef. And I say this with honesty…if it was legal in the United States, I would marry it. I would marry that piece of beef, I loved it that much. Deepti..I’m sorry.
The wedding went off without a hitch with the most perfect weather that Nature could provide. People were happy, charming, all those great things that happens at weddings. I got to see old friends, introduce them to my wife and talk and talk and talk…
And after spending five days there, we had to come back to New York. A land of concrete, of noise and cable TV. A land were you can get anything you want right way, it may not be very good, but you can get it now.
I’m hardly one that can stand up and say no to fast food. I am clearly one who is firmly entrenched in the I Want It Now or as Close to Now as I Can Have It Generation. I like that I can go in and get a meal plopped down in front of me fast, I like that I can go and get Japanese food in a few minutes.
But is it always good to get something right away? To just have it handed to you without any trouble (because waiting is a form of trouble for some)?
True..I didn’t make the food in this magical lodge that I visited. It was a person with great skill, who took the time to train and practice to make such divinity. And then, to take the time to prepare the meal for someone the likes of me..who can whip up a mean batch of cereal.
But, is faster better? Is now better?
I would argue no. While it’s great to get what you want right away, there is to be said for the journey towards what you want. Be it a meal, the perfect pair of shoes, or a career.
I admit it; I hate struggling, struggling sucks. But, if it takes some struggle to make Filet Mignon that I would marry…
We miss the woods. We miss the ease of living. Or maybe it was the fresh air. I don..t know. But, suddenly, as we arrived back in New York, there wasn..t a thrill of coming home, but the sense of defensive screens coming back up. Of going back into battle. And it’s taking some time to remember: why are we living in this city?
Because it’s a part of a journey…
That’s it for this week. Next time…the topic: Why do I write all sentimental and sweet and shit in this blog? It should be electric.