Winter Road Trip Part II

Last week I shared how google decided to drive us right into the eye of a winter storm on the way to Minneapolis.

We got to the hotel which was much nicer than I was expecting. Usually, our trips lead us to a chain hotel with a fancy name, but the rooms and accommodations aren’t much better that what you would get at a roadside discount motel.

Well this fancy hotel had the works. An indoor parking garage, a big bar, a resturant, even a starbucks built right in. Once we got settled, we walked around, it took about 45 minutes to tour the whole works. The wife had work the next day at the main convention center that was on another block. This fancy place had a skywalk, so she didn’t even have to go outside to get there. It was like a weather-controlled city, which is nice when its 15 degrees outside.

The next morning, we had an hour before my wife had to go to the convention thing, and I had some college tours scheduled for our daughter. We visited the restaurant downstairs and got the breakfast buffet. We each ate about $5 worth of food, the buffet cost $25 each, plus a 20% tip came to about $90.

Now it was time for a tour at Minnesota State, trusty google got us there with no incidents, but Minnesota State is a HUGE campus. It took about 2 hours to tour the campus with a guide who loved parading around outside without a coat in 15-degree weather.

After an hour of 15-degree weather…you can close your eyes and your eyelids can feel that your eyeballs are cold. WTF?…my eyeballs are cold! Why is he still talking? If it was up to me, that tour would be over in twenty minutes.

So, we stood outside while he talked about how great that college is. He mentioned the famous people that attended.

“Bob Dylan went to Minnesota State. He didn’t graduate, but he was here just the same.” The tour guide explained. “The Fonz was here too…”

“Did Henry Winkler graduate?” A visitor asked.

“Well, no, he didn’t actually attend, I heard rumor that he toured Minnesota State…just like you. And it doesn’t end there, you know Richie Cunninghams brother, who was on the first year of “Happy Days” then left for college and you never saw him again?”

“Yeah! I remember that lost ‘Happy Days’ cast member!” Another blurted.

The whole time I was thinking about my cold eyeballs and now I had to pee! I had 4 cups of coffee this morning to counter the 6 beers I had when we got to the hotel…I GOTTA PEE!

“Well, no.” The guide continued. “He didn’t go to Minnesota State, but his character in the show left to go to college. And although it was cut from the scene, the original script has him saying he was excited about attending Minnesota State!” The tour explained.

“Well, wow…” I thought, then my thoughts turned to Peeeee!”

“Lets walk for another hour, and I’ll show you the bus stops featured at Minnesota State!” The tour continued.

Peeeeeeee! I continued to think.

I tried to concentrate but couldn’t because of the pee.

“And you know students don’t need to pee to get on the bus that goes to Pee-town. They just show their pee ID, and the ride is free! Just another perk at Minnesota Pee…” The tour continued.

The tour guide continued to walk and talk, but the only thought in my head was the concern that if pee sat inside me long enough, would it pickle my insides, and would it poison my bloodstream and would I die from pee poison.

Twenty years ago, I would have peed my pants, but for the last 15 years I’ve been taking saw palmetto, which, in time shrinks your prostate. An enlarged prostate causes an irresistible urge to pee when you get older. It’s an old Chinese remedy.

So, thanks to this ancient Chinese secret, I was able to grind my teeth and continue on without peeing my pants.

Finally, the torture ended. We were inside and I bee-lined to a bathroom.

Soon, we were back at the hotel by lunchtime. My daughter and I went to the hotel Starbucks and got sandwiches that cost $15 each. So, $30 for two sandwiches with wilted lettuce. I decided to go to our room and make a free hotel cup of coffee, because I didn’t want to end up spending $50 or $100 at Starbucks.

I prayed that my shoelace wouldn’t break, because replacing it would be another $10.

That night, I figured if we got a couple of hamburgers and fries at the hotel, it would cost another $100, so we might as well walk to a nice restaurant and get our money’s worth. And, again, we spent about $100 for a fish meal, a reuben, and a chicken salad.

Money, money, money.

Seems like pretty much anything we did, cost $100 dollars.

The next morning, went to the Minneapolis Museum, which was free!

But before we headed home, the ‘ol lady wanted to see part of an orchestra concert downtown. Of course, we only saw an hour of a two-hour event and the tickets cost $35 each.

So, there you go, another $100 bucks.

Then we headed home to good ‘ol Nebraska, where the grass is greener, and the kids are all above average.


Song in my head:

COMING NEXT: My nose itches!

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Bob Senitram

Webmaster and editor of I obtained a bachelor's degree in micro-biology around the turn of the century but was quickly tracked down and forced to return it to its rightful owner and pay a $25 fine. *** A fan of science fiction, I started this website in 1999 as a portal for science fiction stories that have never been published. *** Completely devoid of talent, I decided to call on the public to supply content. Shortly afterwards Stephen and I started writing weekly columns and have continued to this day.

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