Sunday, December 7, 2014

Small Town Finds

In October, Hubby and I went to a small town north of where we live to ride the Hennepin Canal. We've ridden the I&M Canal at times and wanted to check out another section further west. Hubby took total control of putting this ride together, wanting us to have a day of riding, enjoying the fall colors and lunch at a diner along the route. The morning of the ride dawned chilly but sunny, and we set off, my only request being that we take the back roads to get to our destination. Hubby obliged.

Gears from a lock
That day, that ride, turned out to be one of those times I think back to often and smile. It was that good. Our planned 15ish miles of riding turned into 33 miles due to arriving at what we had hoped would be our lunch spot only to find the diner was no longer in operation. We were able to get a pop at the antiques store that was open, giving us at least a little bit of a boost to keep us going long enough to reach the small town of Sheffield about five miles south. There, we found Z Best Cafe on Main, and our lunch of sandwich, apple and onion soup, and bread pudding made the extra mileage worth riding (though Hubby would most likely say otherwise; extra mileage isn't high on his list of fun things to do).

A beautiful tree along the canal
Ever since enjoying our delicious lunch at Z Best Cafe, we have considered going back to have dinner. We were told dinner at Z Best is even better than lunch, and reservations are definitely needed to get a seat during dinner hours. We haven't done so yet, but we did return to the area yesterday
to check out another restaurant, Uptown Grill. There we feasted on mushrooms stuffed with crab meat and cream cheese, prime rib, portobello mushroom sandwich, and bread pudding (yes, anytime I can get bread pudding I do, along with apple martinis). Afterwards, as we walked to the car, we changed course and went inside The Pink Chihuahua: Small Bites and Cocktails, where I enjoyed a Harvester, an apple martini paying homage to fall with its infusion of cinnamon and other spices. All I can say is mmmmmmmm.

Today, before we headed back home, we traipsed around Lasalle County, eventually finding our way to St. Columba Cemetery, in search of the tombstone for Catherine Donohue, one of the Radium Girls. For whatever reason, I have an affinity for cemeteries, and whenever I have a chance to meander through one, I will. We had a picture of her gravestone, but we never found it. Perhaps next summer I'll cycle up to Ottowa and search again for the gravestone. Seems like as good a destination as any for an overnight cycling adventure. Maybe I'll search for her gravestone at night. I hear the graves of the Radium Girls glow in the dark (and I really want to find out if this is true--though I'm pretty sure it's not).

Tree growing around a gravestone

The gravestone from one of the cemeteries I walked about this
past summer. I love her name! I hope one day I have a
granddaughter named Spicy.

No comments: