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  • Writer's pictureKandy Thietten

Little Moran

Updated: Jul 27, 2021

Usually, I type these posts while Abe is driving. Tonight, I'm sitting outside the RV listening to dogs barking, and all sorts of birds calling. I've seen wild turkeys, and there's a good chance some deer will wander into the field in front of me. We only meant to stay here one night, but tonight will make night three. There's a big part of me that wants to stay longer.

We arrived at Little Moran Creek, a Harvest Host outside of Staple, MN, on Friday afternoon. The owner, Steve, drove his UTV to meet us and make sure we knew where to park, then he offered to bring a fire pit. We said we didn't need it because it was so warm, but he brought one and a pile of wood anyway, just in case. That evening, we threw some ears of corn we'd bought at a roadside stand earlier in the day on the grill. Our dinner of corn on the cob and ants on a log may not have been traditional by any stretch of the imagination, but it sure did taste good. When you're preparing meals in a kitchen with only two feet of counter space IF you have half the sink covered, simplicity is key. When dinner was done, I took a walk around the pond on the property, trying to catch some of the many frogs around the edge so I could take pictures of them. When Steve drove by and saw what I was doing, he went and got a net and brought it out to me. I haven't seen anyone else here trying to catch frogs, so maybe that's not something most adults do for fun. Oh, well. It made me happy. I've gone on walks around the pond every day just to watch the little amphibians hop into the water when I get near.

At about 2:30 a.m. Friday night we were awoken by rain. We had a rain and lightning storm the likes of which I have never seen. It was absolutely powerful and beautiful. The rain blew sideways, and the lightning was flashing in the clouds above almost nonstop, like a strobe light. Abe went outside for about half a minute to check on the power cord, and when he came back in he was drenched. He said it didn't feel like rain so much as a faucet turned on high. And with the lightning, there was no need for a flashlight for him to see what he was doing.

We had planned on driving to church in the morning, but after that much water soaked into the ground we didn't want to risk leaving ruts from the RV tires, so we rode our bikes almost nine miles in. I generally try to dress up at least a little bit for church, but this time I had on tan shorts, a gray tank top, and my bike shoes. I decided that if anyone had an issue with my clothes, it spoke more about them than about me. I had no need to worry about the reception I would receive. Have I mentioned before that I love small town churches? It was a gathering of eight or ten (there were several members missing due to a wedding) of some of the kindest people you could meet. After church, we once again were invited to a potluck. They were worried about there being enough food, but there was plenty. I've been to potlucks with tables piled with food, and I love them because I love to eat, but this was so special and meaningful that they would invite us, a couple of strangers, to share, even though there wasn't an overabundance of food. We had a great time visiting with the group and left feeling very blessed by them.

That evening while we were sitting outside, a pickup pulling a fifth wheel pulled in next to us. After they got set up, Abe and I spent the evening visiting with Bob and Brenda, and later, with Steve and his wife, Marvie, also. Steve and Marvie invited us all to join them today (Sunday) for tubing down the Crow Wing River.

When we woke up this morning, we got our bikes out and rode around the property with Bob and Brenda on some mowed trails that are usually used for bird hunting and bird dog training. Those were the most beautiful trails we've ever rode on. Instead of dirt, we were on grass, surrounded by trees of every kind beside and above us. We watched birds, squirrels, and chipmunks.

After biking, we went to the river where one other couple joined us for the three to four hour trip that took us five. It was so wonderful. Fun and peaceful, and WARM. All the rivers in Idaho are from snow runoff, and the water is SO cold. I expected rivers north of where I'm from to be freezing, but it was perfectly cool. First we swam in a warm lake, now we floated down a warm river. I could get used to this. There were thousands of minnows from one to six inches long, plus we saw several large carp swimming along the bottom, and we kept passing logs and rocks with turtles on them, basking in the sun. It was positively delightful. And when we were done floating, the starving group went to Wahoo Bar and Grill, home of possibly the world's largest panties and bra, for some much needed burgers.

As I typed this, Abe and I watched as, over the course of thirty minutes, a blanket of fog crept up from the bottom of the hill in front of us until it almost touched us then receded back down until it nearly disappeared. And now, a fawn is running laps around it's mother quicker than I imagined a fawn could run. Beautiful.

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