Minnesota Nice: a snapshot of upper-Midwestern life 

  
Encountering this dog waiting very politely for her owner, patrons entering the establishment say (audibly!), “Excuse me,” as they gently open the door to access their morning joe. 

There are hipsters here (especially around the universities), but they don’t have the typical ‘tude that seems ubiquitous of handlebar mustaches and ironic flannel; they can’t help but smile and joke along with customers and fellow patrons. 

Babies abound at the corner coffeeshop, lashed to parents, dashing across floors, hanging on doorknobs. Tweens braid each other’s (naturally) platinum tresses. 

People live longer up here than other places and do I think it has something to do with the strong and unassuming sense of comunal life? You betcha. 

precious breath

IMG_1247spending the last few days keeping vigil at grandpa’s hospice bedside, I’ve counted each of his breaths. As the pauses between his exhale and inhale lengthen, I hold my own breath, listening for his lungs to heave once more, knowing that at some point soon, they won’t.  He will exhale, his body will go slack, and he won’t breathe anymore till his Maker remakes him, on the last day. Continue reading