On Frozen Pond


[May 10, 2013.  The day before Minnesota’s Fishing Opener, a/k/a, National Junk Rotation Day (yup, lots of garage sales tomorrow).  This is what you’re getting in lieu of a softball report.  I had the wrong game time yesterday – arrived in the bottom of the 6th inning!  It happens – unfortunately, more and more often.  Our Cardinals split with Sauk Rapids-Rice, losing 3-2, then winning 9-6, to maintain 1st place in the Central Lakes Conference with a 6 – 1 record.]


[So, it appears likely that fishing tomorrow will not be done by boat – at least not on the bigger lakes.]


[Lake Taylor appeared to be totally open this morning; and Lake Cowdry was to a large degree.  As it is now afternoon, I have to note that we finally have open water in front of our house on Lake Darling.]

tomsantaWhen I arrived home from the ‘Y’ this morning, the supervisor had the refrigerator pulled out and was cleaning behind and underneath it.  I think there were remnants of King Tut’s tomb back there.  Of course, I immediately feigned injury.  The frig goes about a ton and a half and was initially installed by forklift.  If women want to move furniture, women can move furniture!  I will always remember the day when Mom could no longer flip her queen-size mattress by herself.  She was 84 years old then and weighed about 90 pounds.  She said she just sat on the floor and cried.  I could NEVER flip a queen-size mattress . . . without the aid of a tire jack.  As a man, however, I could never understand the need to flip a mattress in the first place – must have something to do with quantum mechanics.


[Heading down to the lake this morning to check it out.  The supervisor “suggested” that I do so.]


[Every year more steps appear in the spring?]


[I made it!  All the way to the bottom.  A sign of the season (?), a beach ball floating in front of Dangerous Dan’s.  Between my vantage and the point, there will be at least three lake homes for sale this year.]


[Looking South, if not ice dams, at least snow dams from the top of the ice.  The lake levels appear to be back to “normal,” if not a little above.]


[The rip rap was not covered by water last year.]





[Fish were flopping in the limited open water around the fallen trees.]



[Walking the shoreline to Dangerous Dan’s.]


[The skeletal remains of docks and lifts hoping to soon be placed in the water!]


[Our place from Dangerous Dan’s, a view blocked by foliage in the summer.]


[Dangerous Dan’s view of beautiful, frozen Lake Darling.]


[We generally can’t see our steps when all greens up.]


[Our front yard “Alexandria Cardinal.”]


[The elm.]



This is the supervisor with sticks.  She loves sticks.  All winter long she paces inside mumbling a mantra about picking up sticks when the snow melts.  Then she likes to cut ’em up and burn ’em.  Sometimes that requires somebody to find a saw . . . or better yet, a chainsaw, to aid in that task.  When I see that look in her eye, I generally grab my camera, bolt for the car, calling back I have to go cover a girls’ Tiddlywinks tournament, or some such thing.  Didn’t work today.  😉

Readers write:

Our Sarasota Friday Golf Group just completed 18 holes of golf in 85-degree weather. Sitting now in air condition comfort watching the golf channel thinking about our drive to Alex next Thursday. Hopefully there will be leaves on the trees to give us shade while sitting on our deck watching the beautiful Lake Darling sunset…hopefully not in a parka.  ~ Crazy Dave

Not looking forward to the cold weather/iced over lakes but am stoked that I’ll get to see the lilacs in bloom again this year.   I’m always tempted to go bury my face in a bush but the owner may not completely appreciate it!!  ~ See you soon, Sara

I will forward this to a friend of mine who is the former weather service director of Australia and a climatologist for the down under view.  Meanwhile climate models show the upper Midwest with an average temperature rise of one degree Fahrenheit per decade through the rest of the century.  Lake Darling didn’t get the word yet.  ~ Marcus

Wow, Tom … I’m at my FL house currently – been in the 80’s here for the last month plus.  My brother Steve lives here in the winter (school schedule … used to teach and coach football, now just football) – talked to him yesterday about heading up to the cabin (30 miles north of Brainerd) and he mentioned there was still ice on the lake – I thought he was kidding!!!!!!  Really enjoy your personal updates and asides – hope to see you again before too long.  ~ Bob

I can see why the “Snow Birds” are so reluctant to go home.  It’s swimming pool weather in Phoenix.  ~ Larry

You are hilarious! Good for you, the Fat Boys Walking Club had gone co-ed!  ~ Rachel

I’m so proud of you!  Love the hat very Minnesotan!  Puts all the women’s hats to shame!  ~ Marnee’

Priceless!!!  Thank god this isn’t 26 years ago. You would be filing Chapter 11 with the cost of developing all your pics.   ~ Crazy Dave

Go, GO Meed !
You’re really missing out…I escaped the snow, rain, sleet, this morning to
arrive here to perfect weather (even Cam would tolerate a few hundred
bums)….lunch at Wild Ginger followed by walk around Pike Place Mkt (many
thousands of tulips in every imaginable color; if I’d been staying downtown
I’d have bought one of the fancy bouquets to brighten up the hotel room).
Puget Sound looked pretty spectacular (even better than Lake Darling), and
with Sat/Sun predicted to be more of the same, I’ll be walking around Green
Lake (although they’ll have to set stakes to tell if I’m moving…I had my
hernia repair last Friday, so am moving at less than my usual peak pace).
Did you see the article in today’s StarTrib about ‘microapartments’ in
Seattle?  $850/month for a 150 sq.ft. unit, sharing a kitchen with 6-8 other
units (and they go quickly because these are such a bargain compared to
regular apt rental rates !! I guess my occasional thoughts of retiring here
would be a total fantasy (if only I had one of those cushy gov’t retirements
packages !!)  ~ B’ball Dan

TV is great if you get rained, snowed or frozen out. We in Sarasota don’t know what that’s like.  Mary and I are enjoying the sunset on the lanai with drink in hand and watching Rick Steves visiting the Czech Republic on TV.  Not bad considering we’ll hopefully be doing the same on our deck in three weeks. I don’t care if I’m in a parka, I’ll be there watching the best sunset ever.  We are so lucky to enjoy the “best of both”.  See you soon.  ~ Crazy Dave

Nut Goodies are awesome.  I liked Bit-O-Honey too.  I hope it catches on with Millennials because Boomers (including me) don’t want to eat anything that might pull out our fillings or break a tooth!  ~ The Nanner

My brother-in-law will be happy to know this. He is a big Nut Goodie fan. Unfortunately, he only brings one along in the golf cart when we golf together.  Maybe he will bring me a bit-0-honey bar this year assuming the golf course will open.  ~ Crazy Dave

We hereby nominate Tom Obert as Photographer in Chief for Alexandria, Mn.  Great photos, Tom!   We especially enjoyed seeing Adrienne Wensman, one of our neighborhood kids.  ~ Jeanne

So sad.  Liked your video – very amazing work.  ~ Jami

Thank YOU, Tom! Yeah, it was great having Matt & Julie there, and making some new friends, too! Thanks again for all the video and pictures, and you and Ruth continuing to populate the audience! I’m humbled, and greatly appreciate you both.  ~ Lisa

Loved your glove display and dead snowman yesterday!!!  ~ Fran

You ARE RESPONSIBLE for my weight gain! These pictures do me no good!  ~ Rita Hah! 

About tomobert63

The Journey Begins Thanks for joining me! This is the follow-up to the original, “alexandriacardinals.wordpress.com,” which overwhelmed the system’s ability to handle it any more. Thus, this is “Part 2.” As the original was initially described: 10-26-07-4 “It all began in a 5,000 watt radio station in Fresno, California” . . . wait a minute, that was Ted Baxter on the Mary Tyler Moore Show! Let’s see . . . oh yeah, it all began in 2003 when retirees, i.e., old people, in Alexandria, Minnesota, who had no desire to become snow birds, went looking for mid-winter entertainment here in the frozen tundra of West Central Minnesota. We discovered girls’ high school hockey, fell in love immediately, and it remains our favorite spectator sport to this day. Initially, and for several years, reports on these games were e-mailed to those who were actually snowbirds but wanted to keep abreast of things “back home.” It was ultimately decided a blog would be more efficient, and it evolved into a personal diary of many things that attracts tens of readers on occasion. It remains a source of personal mental therapy and has yet to elicit any lawsuits. ~ The Editor, May 9, 2014 p.s. The photo border around the blog is the Cardinal girls’ hockey team after just beating Breck for the state championship in 2008. It’s of the all-tournament team. The visible Breck player on the left is Milica McMillen, then an 8th-grader – she is now an All-American for the Gophers. The Roseau player in the stocking cap I believe is Mary Loken, who went on to play for UND; and the Cardinal player on the right, No. 3, is Abby Williams, the player we blame most for making us girls’ hockey fans who went on to play for Bemidji State. *********************************************************************************** Photos contained herein are available for personal use. All you have to do is double click on any of the photos and they will become full screen size. You can then save them into your personal “My Pictures” file. They make lovely parting or hostess gifts, or holiday gifts for such as Uncle Ernie who wants to see how his grand niece is doing on the hockey team. If any are sold for personal profit, however, to, for example, the Audubon Society, National Geographic, Sven’s Home Workshop Monthly, Curling By The Numbers, or the World Wrestling Federation, I only request that you make a donation to the charitable organization of your choice. You have two hours and fifteen minutes. Pencils ready? Begin! **********************************************************************************
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