Dear Sandy Mason, You and Earl had reasons — good reasons, family reasons — for moving to Arizona full time. I understand that. I just wish you could be here for the beautiful feeling of spring. You know. When spring comes to North Dakota it feels as good as if you just quit hitting yourself on the head with a hammer.
Dear Marilyn in Winnipeg, I don't know what you Canadians do on May Day, but here in the States we used to run around with little baskets. In them, there would be some candy and maybe a flower. We would set them on the doorstep of friends. Then we would ring the doorbell and run like crazy to avoid a kiss. Maybe we would run slowly if we wouldn't mind a kiss!
Golf courses are opening. The Shrine Circus is in town. The Empire Arts Center is winding up a weeklong 20th anniversary celebration downtown. So who cares if there still are a few dirty snow drifts shrinking away? This is a break-out weekend in Grand Forks. They say Shriners from Winnipeg are showing up for the annual circus. And there will be elephants, tigers and clowns at the REA. With help of local businesses, the circus is free for children.
Dear Emerson, Near as I can figure, you are finishing your third grade year at Discovery School. You are one of the few youngsters who have taken up my invitation to write letters. I guess you agree with me that computers are fine. So are those little phones on which people talk-talk-talk and exchange messages. Still, there's nothing like handwriting on a piece of paper. Especially when it arrives in an envelope with an address and a stamp. That's why I hope you still are into letter writing as you round out another year of school.
You can find a Grafton Burger for $7.50 or order a Hoople Burger for $6.95 at Shenanigan's Family Restaurant in nearby Grafton, N.D. The large, homey restaurant on Hill Avenue, the main street in Grafton, has a wide variety of offerings on its menu. There are appetizers, salads and pizza. Then salads, melts, sandwiches and burgers. There's poultry and pork items along with seafood and beef. Burritos, tostadas and enchiladas round out the choices.
Water from the melting snow has been making a gurgling sound as it runs down the drain near my house on Cottonwood Street. There are a couple of crows swooping around — acting as though they own the outdoors. And I have decided this is break-out week in Grand Forks. So I went over to the banks above the Red River. I got as close as I could, and I shouted. "Red," I said. "This is it. We are done with you and your ice. Start sending some catfish so people like Ernie the Angler don't have to do ice fishing."
Along with her Bible, La Verle "Lovey" Brehm has a dictionary. She uses it almost every day at Tufte Manor, 3300 Cherry St., when she plays Scrabble. She's 96, and this is her second stay at Tufte. I met her recently while visiting Valley Memorial Homes around Grand Forks. "I like it here," she told me. She goes to the sing-a-longs. She harmonizes when they sing "In the Garden." She has a walker to keep herself steady as she moves around Tufte Manor. She mingles with other residents in the large, homey commons area. She enjoys her meals in the dining room.
My choice will be an Acapulco Seafood Salad when I next stop for a meal at Paradiso on South Washington Street. This, for $11.49, is a blend of seafood along with fresh lettuce decorated with tomatoes, mild cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese. And black olives! On occasional visits to Paradiso, it appears to be one of the busiest restaurant in this city. Especially on Sundays. That's when it is well known that kids eat free. And people know the restaurant offers a free lunch or dinner for people having a birthday.
It's Friday the 13th! So what about it? That was the response from people sitting around the bridge table earlier this week when I asked if anyone was edgy. And I came to the conclusion Friday the 13th doesn't rate very high on scale of edginess anymore. Bernie Goodman said her father, the late Mac McCullough of East Grand Forks, was very nervous on those days. And as Julie Evans was arranging her cards, she said her son and his wife chose Aug. 13 for their wedding day. They wanted to celebrate some anniversaries on a Friday 13.
They were high school sweethearts long ago in Langdon, N.D. They were married in Aurora, Ill., in 1952. Jim and Laurette Zettel spent part of their lives on a farm. They lived in Langdon before they moved to Grand Forks in 1974. He's a mechanic. He worked at both the university and the hospital as they raised their family.