In Which Some Dirt is Moved….. Slowly. Oh, and Food.

As I’m sure you absolutely recall, my week started a tad earlier than normal with a flight to Fargo.  The week ended noisily.

So Monday and Tuesday in Fargo were all about watching dirt get dug out in the flat fields of the Lake Agassiz Basin.  We arrived on Monday morning, 0800 (late start) with two little dozers and two excavators waiting for us.  They were not permitted to start until everyone got there at 0800.  Apparently that extended to pegging the area out as well, the poor operators were bored for sure!  It was a typical Fargo day, windy and overcast, so think of it as really quite cold.  We had about 1500 cuy dirt to get out of this hole and I believe all teams were thinking “with a teaspoon?”. I guess they don’t breed machines quite so big in North Dakota, something about terrible soil I’d wager.  Anyways, we watched the boys strip the topsoil for a few hours then finally got digging and as we got deeper we got into really nice clay – gran would have been in heaven, blue clay!  Mid/late afternoon I was done with digging holes (we got to the bottom and I played with all of it) so headed back to the hotel to get a little work done from my bed.

Test pit one with the clay slopped out for Bill to play with.

ND sunrise. Sure, a little after first rise but that halo is cool!


Tuesday was much of the same.  Ames was digging test pit two and the same local mob did test pit three. Ames put on the sort of show that I’d expect, much more used to digging a swimming pool those lads. I went by at 1700 and they were done and had started fencing it off for the week. They had their most well oiled team out there.  Test pit one was still about half way. Test pit three was in struggle town, just to depth (ish) in time for people to leave, that’s it.

A stunning ND day watching dirt be dug at test pits two (done) and three (took three days).

I have to point out that the clay was great clay. I had fun being a kid, like out the block, and playing with it. Gran would make some fun things with this blue clay I’d suspect.  It will be annoying to dig, mostly when it get wet, but when it’s fairly dry, not bad.  What are the chances we’ll get dry weather the entire time we’re digging out 50 million cuy of dirt? Yeah, I thought so. Boooooo.

Evidently this is Chicken Parmigiana here in ND, maybe in the USA. I ate less than half for lunch, the rest I had for dinner.

Wednesday I did another lap of our test pits then returned to the hotel for some more working.  Eventually the hotel needed me out and I found a lunch spot.  This trip I tried a few different places for food (Mark can get tied to the tried and true).  Lunch I managed to discover a place called Luna, the coffee was okay, but the lamb burger was great!

This is a more reasonably sized meal, especially when paired with a latte. The book isn’t bad too!

I was told when I took off that it was snowing in Denver while it had been stunning and sunny in Fargo. We had to wait in Fargo 15 minutes to let a storm smash thru. When I landed in Denver, bright sunshine!

When I landed I headed home, changed into jeans, then straight to the driving range for the fortnightly social.  Top golf is pretty cool, they have multi-level driving with servers to bring food and drinks.  There are also games / challenges you can do and if you get you ball in the nets you get more points etc.  I guess the ball collection efforts are also reduced if you’re aiming for a net that has some sort of automatic collection system.  There was a cart out there trying to find something in one of the pits, no one hit him, even with a ‘free wing’s incentive from Che!

Please no one critique my technique. I’ve not been to the driving range for years!  Not that regular visits would help (shhhh).

Thursday and Friday were bog standard days.  Well, a lot of meetings and a whole lot of catch up work after playing outside for days, but otherwise normal.  Friday after work I first headed to get a haircut. I highly recommend Scissors and Scotch, for a massage from Patty or even a dry haircut for women.  They don’t have all the styling tools, being a place for ‘distinguished gentlemen’, but they do a good dry cut.  Not having all that noise is lovely too.  Oh, and you get a free drink with any service! (a real drink, Scotch no less)  From there I stopped in at home and dropped off Red then walked up to El Tapatio for Mexican dinner in honour of Cinco de Mayo.  Seems the locals enjoy any excuse to eat Mexican food and drink margaritas, I suspect the Mexicans hate it.

Cinco de Mayo, Earl was there too…though no photographic evidence

The evening wasn’t a late one so we started Saturday with a little Earl torture 😉 he was happy to go for a walk around the reservoir. I’m not sure he was quite so happy about a few little jogs (he did five time 100 steps jogging); the main goal was achieved:  we proved that his lungs don’t die when he jogs slow and short.  He’ll build up to a longer jog (it’s something he professes to want to do, ish).  He absolutely was NOT happy about my saying he needs to do 100 squats before I unlock the car! Hehehehe, he wants a butt, squats will do it.  He did 70 squats and 30 lunges.  I did the 100 squats.  Should have heard him whine though!  The reservoir looks a whole lot different now to when we were last there (when it was all iced over).

After that spot of fun we headed to the Bar Cars derby party “Talk derby to me”, an event fundraising for some sort of medical … Something ….  Oops I forget what now. Anyways, the people watching was amazing!  The Bar Car is a neighborhood dive bar, super laid back and chill.  The Derby is all about getting super fancy.  So you can imagine the regulars in their regular gear and the pretentious ring ins.  It was quite amusing.

The girls looked stunning, no pretension here. I went with jeans and a tshirt this year.

Saturday didn’t end with the Derby though. We headed back to Earls and had a nanna nap before going into town for a concert.  It was a concert chosen by Earl so entirely metal, he decided doors opened at 1800, two openers and two bands on a Saturday night so they’d not start until 1900 and wouldn’t get to the second opener until 2000. When we got there, at 2000, the first main band had just started. Oops.  But they’d only done one song so he didn’t miss much.  Looking around the room it was full of old folks, actually old, not just Earl old.  Sepultura and Testament were both started before I was conceived.  I guess that kinda speaks to why the show started so early.

Sepultura and Testament. Great show.

Sunday was a slow day, mostly.  We slept in after the late night and then Earl did a whole lot of cooking.  He started by upgrading Rhiannon eggs for breakfast, add bacon! Cook the toast, turn it onto bacon laid out to frame the hole, crack the egg into the hole.  Oh yummy!  Then he did a quiche for the first time ever, he had a host of eggs to use and I thought it would be quick and easy.  He did make the pastry himself as well to be fair.  Then he ended with some nougat-bar-but-not for his breakfasts.  Four hours later I got another nanna nap!  I guess that four hours wasn’t useless, I half worked and half helped him.

What meal can you not improve with some bacon?

The nanna nap was necessary, we had dinner at Becky and Lanes with some politicians.  Becky is the treasurer and general organiser for her local candidate and he wanted to meet Earl so off to dinner we went.  I made chocolate sauce pudding for dessert (Oh yeah, I did that while he faffed with pastry) as our contribution, turns out its one of the few dishes that Earl and Becky’s mom could cook, they call it chocolate fudge cake (or similar).  So it was a later night than it should have been for a Sunday but by virtue of a lazy day and a nanna nap Monday wasn’t too bad.

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One thought on “In Which Some Dirt is Moved….. Slowly. Oh, and Food.

  1. Bens Edit: “Played in the mud 💩(like any good Calvin would), Parma with pasta (wifeys absolute favourite), Sepultura🤘, Baconned Rhiannon Egg 👅(#win….), AND Chocolate Sauce Puddding….. WHAT A WEEK!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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