Where Have I Been? The Non-Baseball Adventures of Memorial Day Weekend…

It’s been a while since I last went to a baseball game, 2 weeks and 2 days to be exact.  In the mean time I have been hanging out with family and enjoying the 21st century – yep, I finally have Netflix.  I am a huge Arrested Development fan, so of course I decided to try my free trial month when the new “Netflix-only” Arrested Development season 4 came out.  But enough about how I capped off the Memorial Day weekend, how about I take you through a pictorial version (in Instagrammed edits) of first half of my weekend…

***Cue old-timey film projector sound…***

I mentioned in my previous ballhawk post – Mother’s Day game – that my grandma had breast cancer and that the pink baseballs made me a little emotional when I thought about how I was so lucky to still have my family member who was touched by this disease.

So for Memorial Day weekend I got to travel down to Worthington, MN and visit my grandparents.

Here is a picture with me and my grandma with the pink Mother’s Day ball:

1 - Grandma

Then the whole family took some time to look out the window in the background of the photo above to check out a new family of geese:

2 - Goose

3 - Goose

A Cemetery, A Permanant Typo, And A Church:

Once we were able to get some lunch and visit for a little bit, we traveled out to the small “towns” of Wilmont and St. Kilian.  I have fond memories of these places, since I can remember visiting my great-grandma’s farm as a kid and going into “town” in St. Kilian to pick up gummy-worms from a couple named Stan and Sylvia who ran the only store of any kind.  The town itself has about a dozen homes, a church (well over 100 years old), a school (which is not used a a school any longer), and a baseball field – which  the left-field wall is the wall from the cemetery you will see below:

4 - Cemetary

I have many relatives in this cemetery, including my great-grandmother and even the plot and stone for my grandparents that I was visiting (“that’s not eerie at all”, he says with heavy sarcasm).  Many of the graves here are incredibly old, but my “favorite” is of some distant relative that I never met.  I ALWAYS remember this stone, since the crown of thorns is always so incredibly sharp and pointy:

5 - Cemetary

And since many of my relatives, and many of the settlers in this area came directly from Germany, many of the old stones are actually in German.  I believe that this is one of the examples (possibly a dual English-German stone), but it is hard to tell since nature is taking it’s course:

6 - Cemetary

And lastly, from the cemetery collection, here is a non-family-member’s unfortunate gravestone.  Maybe it’s an inside joke or some sort of humorous thing, but to me it’s a bit sad:

7 - Cemetary

Not far away from the cemetery was the church (go figure).  This church was the one that my grandparents were wed in, and the one that my great-grandma attended more than any other church.  Here’s a look at the inside:

8 - Church

Sorry, I do not have a good one of the outside, but let’s just say, it’s an old wooden-shingled building that has cracking white paint.  Up in the choir balcony is a great example of the stained glass that decorates nearly every window of this building:

9 - Church

After we listened to some stories on the ones we have lost (and decorated their stones with flowers) and checked out the quaint old church we did what only felt right… We went ASPARAGUS HUNTING!  Since we had over 20 miles to drive to get back to Worthington, we decided to drive the back roads and look in the ditches for wild asparagus.  I am not a huge fan, but there is something cool about hunting for your own food and enjoying your reward.  In the spirit of any good angler, let’s just say I “caught a bunch” – as will be witnessed below.

ASPARAGUS ADVENTURE TIME:

Here is an example of what we were “hunting” for:

10 - Asparagus

When you are driving slowly and checking out the ditches you will either be looking for dead asparagus bushes (since this is an indicator that there may be some in the area) of for taller “bad” asparagus that may point to smaller, pick-able stalks, like this:

11 - Asparagus

Those are the example of pick-able, here’s the example of the “bad” stalks, which are just too mature and grown:

12 - Asparagus

Notice how there is a little bud growing just to the right of the crazy plant?  Sometimes if the conditions are just right, the stubs will not receive enough sunlight and produce a white version of asparagus:

13 - Asparagus

It is not perfectly white, but close enough.  The white ones will cost you more if you were to buy them at the store… plus, the store bought asparagus is just a different taste even when comparing green to green.  Sometimes you get shut-out at your stops, but at least you get to see little things like this:

14 - Asparagus

While other stops are bountiful and fruitful, like this:

15 - Asparagus

We ended up picking well over 5 pounds of asparagus on our way back.  In fact, I have some in my fridge at home right now.  Cover asparagus in olive oil and sea salt, or in butter and cheese, or wrapped in beef, and you have yourself some good veggies.

In order to bookend this story with baseball (from pink Mother’s Day ball to this), here is a photo of a baseball field that takes it’s name from a relative of mine.  The name of the field is Butts Probst Field, and it’s in Wilmont, MN.  Yes, his name was Butts Probst; Butts was his nickname, but no one ever knew him by his real name, Lawrence:

16 - Butts Probst

 

So there it is, my Memorial Day in the form of a pseudo-slide-show…

Thanks to my wife, grandparents, and parents for hanging out with me and letting me take some many photos.

 

PS: Here’s a bonus photo from the drive back home from Worthington; it’s from St. Peter, MN:

17 - Doctor Who

 

Looks like the Daleks came from Minnesota!  (Skaro is a reference from Doctor Who, look it up in the Google-factory.)

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One thought on “Where Have I Been? The Non-Baseball Adventures of Memorial Day Weekend…

  1. There is a town called Pease in Minnesota, up and off of 169, south of Milaca, east-northeast of St. Cloud. So it may be a tongue-in-cheek reference.

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