I am torn, non-existant readers, on the issue of Murmuring Lake. Or more precisely, the Point Pleasant side-trip in the convention. There are two options, the food is supposed to be amazing and the price is right - $18 and I think transportation is included! (If you know for sure please leave a comment. Oh the shameless begging for comments!) I could do the Monday afternoon one with little difficulty, but I am afraid I will be too exhausted! Feel free to comment and talk me into it!
I have been to Murmuring Lake once before and I have cut and pasted my Madison Lake story from 2002 below!
[We had some adventures, then got some snacks and went to the cemetary to visit Maud...]
Then off we went to Murmuring Lake. I think the less said about the drive out there, the better. Maire and Nicole were incredibly kind and kept saying things like, "That map is nutty!" and "It could have happened to anyone!" But there is no getting around the fact that we left Mankato at about 3 o'clock and at 3:20 we saw a sign that said, "Welcome to Mankato!" Needless to say it is not necessary to drive through Mankato twice to get to Murmuring Lake.
I had called "Pleasant Point" which was on the site of the Inn (also originally called Pleasant Point Inn) to see if they had a restaurant.
The fellow I talked to said they had steak frys on Fridays or maybe it was steak fries. Either way it was not Friday so we were out of luck. Luckily I hadn't finished my bag of treats so I dined on them. The site of the Inn is now a campground. It is a nice, shady one but not the Lodge and
bungalow set up I was hoping for.
The lake seemed sunnier than I expected. It was a perfect day. Warm, but not hot. A nice breeze. I always pictured the lake as smaller with over hanging trees all over the shore. More like a New Hampshire lake. However it was big and open. Very pretty.
We decided to try to find Jule Ray's girlhood home. We searched all around the shore and saw nothing that looked like the picture in the companion. We went back out to the main road to see if we could access the other side of the lake when I spotted a driveway with two rocks at the end that looked like they had writing on them. "Hey you two, "I piped up from the back seat where I had been sent like the naughty non-vampire expert I am, "One of those rocks says 'Maud Hart Lovelace', Do you think it could be a clue?"
They agreed that it could very well be and we pulled over and piled out of the car. Sure enough it was Austin Park. There were poplar trees lining the driveway and a nice house at the end of the drive. I said I was going to go to the door and ask if I could tape the view of the lake. Nicole and
Maire said they were going to guard the car. Hmmmm....
I went to the door. it was open and I could hear the TV. I rang the bell and waited. No one answered the door. I shouted back down the driveway to Nicole and Maire (who were standing facing the road, with their hands casually behind their backs as of to say - "We are only paid to take her for a ride in the country when the men in the white coats say she is feeling
well enough to go.") that I was going to the lake side of the house to see if maybe someone was working in the yard from whom I could ask permission.
Here is where my morals and convictions were tested and found wanting. There was no one in the yard. But I REALLY wanted a picture of the bay window. So I stealthily turned on the video camera, threw caution to the winds, whipped off my lenscap and put the camera to my eye as I spun around 360 degrees to get the full (fast) panorama. Then I went back up the
driveway as if I had not just trespassed. I was comforted by the fact that when I
looked through the screen while I was waiting for someone to answer the door I
saw a wooden carving of what appeared to be Betsy Tacy and Tib on the kitchen
table. So I assume that whoever owns the house would be forgiving...
We drove back down to the water and I was thinking about the swimsuit Ihad tucked in my backpack. How many chances does one get to swim in Murmuring Lake in this lifetime? But did I really want to drive back to Mankato with wet hair? What in the world was I thinking? I asked Maire and Nicole if they minded if I went in for a dip and they did not at all. (I am sure they were thinking, "Thank goodness, now we don't have to keep dumbing down the conversation for her!")
So I went to the car and got my bathing suit out. Where to change?
Between the car doors seemed like the best idea. And then a little old man came by walking his poodle. And his poodle figured out what I was up to and decided to stare at me. So I waited. And the poodle waited. And the old man waited. And I waited. And the poodle waited. And the old man finally figured out that he looked like he was awaiting a strip show and dragged the poodle away... So I changed.
After giving specific videotaping instructions to Nicole ("From the
waist up only, please...") I ran into the water.
It was lovely. The sand was smooth, there were no little fish
carcasses, no rocks, the water was warmish from the hot weather. I did some handstands while Nicole took pictures. (one of which I am hoping to post to picturetrail if I can get it to upload after lunch...) I was so glad I decided to go in.
No one got lost on the ride home. Later I had a lovely dinner with
Nicole in a little Irish bar. Then I went back and had drinks while Guusje, Amy, Kristen W. and Michelle had a lovely dinner at the same place. THEN Amy, Kristen, Nicole and I planned the next convention based on Betsy and the Great World. And you had all better write to Amy to nag her to post the particulars, because it is spectacular!
Wednesday morning it was - Goodbye Mankato and I hate even typing the words...
But you can bet I will be back in 5 years!