I woke up in my tent to an amazing sunrise. The day was going to be full, but I was looking forward to it. Jeff had given me a bike to ride into town. We are both tall, so it worked out. I grabbed my camera equipment and headed into town. Along the way, I photographed some graffiti on some train box cars as I smiled appreciating the artworks. My first planned stop was the Minnesota Marine Art Museum. I met with Andy, the gallery director, and he took me on a tour. You would not believe the top quality levels of artwork there. They had one of the first, if not the first Van Gough oil paintings. There were paintings by Monet, Georges Seurat, Pablo Piscasso, and Henri Matissee. Their caliber of artworks rivaled any major American gallery. I photographed some of the pieces for the book. I will have to wait till later to release them. I have to get individual images released from the gallery. That is something I will do upon my return to Denver.
I left happy and inspired. I took off to the downtown district and began checking out local shops. In the process, I spotted a Godfather’s Pizza. Yes, they are still around. I went in for the buffet as I have been craving pizza for about two weeks. I got a table and grabbed some grub. It pretty much still tasted like 1995, but it was good. I was looking at this girls inked sleeve. She had a Third Eye Tatu shirt on. I complimented her on the shirt design. She told me it was a local shop. After I had my fill of pizza, I jumped back on the bike to continue checking out the town. I caught up to the inked girl, Molly. She was heading back to the shop. I went with her to check it out and get my edgy art fix. I met the owner and watched some girl getting her arm worked on. I took off from there to head back to Jeff’s. He was having a work get together at 2:30.
I arrived to meet some of his employees. They were a cool crowd. I hung out chatting it up with a few of them for a bit before I was off to the next mini-adventure. I walked two houses up to Chris’s place. He was having a big weekend party. He introduced me to some of his friends. I had my camera gear with me as some of the kids were out playing on the jet skis and boat. I wanted to get a few action shots on the river. I went down to the dock and let them know who I was and what I was working on. The next thing I knew, one group was back with the tubes that were being towed behind the jet ski. I expressed an interest as I have never done that. They insisted I get on and try. I put my gear down and was ready to go. I was excited to try this out.
The jet ski took off. I ended u spending most of the afternoon over there riding and playing. It was nice to be able to step away from the kayak and live a little more. One of the girls popped open my bag while I was out riding the tube. She ended up snapping off a few shots of the group and of me playing. I couldn’t be mad. I ended up eating it quite a few time when I was trying some stunts, like riding on my knees, standing up, and no hands. I was smiling the entire time.
I came back and reached out to Jami, my friend John’s sister. She showed up as I was uploading some images. She offered to take me around town for a bit. She drove me around and we ended up stopping at a bar. We chatted into the evening before calling it a day. As I went to sleep that night, I thought it may have been allergies. I think it was from the ingested river water from earlier that day. The day was a good one full of awesome surprises. This town, while small, was full of history and fun.