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Neither Snow nor Rain nor Dark of Night


Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
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Monday, November 26, 2001

On my usual late morning walk down our Big Woods road, I cross the bridge over the South Fork, pass the road to Jaymour Larson's old place, round the big curve and am nearing the tall post that once supported Pancake Blagsvedt's mailbox, when I hear a car coming towards me from the north. I don't have to look at my watch to make a good guess that the driver is Jim, one of two Lanesboro rural mail carriers. Sure enough, here he comes over the hill in his red Chevy pickup with "U.S. Mail" painted on its door. He sits, as usual, on the passenger side skillfully maneuvering his truck with his left hand on the steering wheel and his left foot operating the gas and brake pedals. He comes to a halt. We often meet like this.

He looks at the binoculars hanging around my neck and asks, "What birds are you seeing?" I tell him I'm seeing hundreds, maybe thousands, of robins. They are gathering in huge flocks right now and are gorging on red cedar berries in preparation for their journeys south. Their manic calls and short erratic flights are good indications that the berries have fermented.

It's a cloudy, cold and windy day in early November. It won't be long before the snow flies we say. Usually our visits last only a minute or two, but today we talk a little longer. I ask Jim if he grew up in this area. He says his family moved here in the 1950's when he was just a boy, but in some ways, he still feels like a newcomer. I understand. We bought our land in 1972, but we are still newcomers to the people who have deep generational roots in the Big Woods.

Jim's friendliness makes me think of my grandpa Abe, a rural mail carrier in the Glencoe, MN area from 1907 to 19. Like Jim, Abe knew and visited with the people along his route. He first carried mail by horse and buggy, then by motorcycle and finally by car. During Abe's time as a mail carrier, two world wars and the Great Depression occurred. Today, our nation again faces great challenges, but of a different sort. At least my grandpa never had to worry about terrorism.

I ask Jim how he feels about the anthrax threats. He is fatalistic. He says he isn't scared--when his time comes, it comes and he can't do anything about it. I'm not so concerned about my personal safety either, but we both worry about what terrorism is doing to our country. He says he wishes the media would stop telling terrorists how to hurt and frighten us. I agree. I'm especially c .....
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Return of the Eagles

Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
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By John LevellMonday, November 12, 2001

Despite the unseasonably warm temperatures of early November 2001, Bald Eagles can again be seen soaring over the Root River Bluffs of the Lanesboro region. Their arrival, as much a ..... 
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Is It Really Winter?

Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
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Virginia CooperMonday, December 3, 2001

As I sit down to write this column, I wonder if there is really anything left to say about gardening. This morning we all awoke to see a covering of white. It was quite lovely, but sad, as it does herald ..... 
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My Guarantee To You

Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
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Monday, December 3, 2001

I just got up off the kitchen floor. Our five-year-old dishwasher needed my attention. About two weeks ago it started running water out its door. Maybe it was trying to tell us that the kitchen floor needed scrubbing. ..... 
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Noodle Soup

Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
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Monday, November 26, 2001

“Food is the communication between the person cooking and the people eating,” I heard Julia Childs say on a TV program the other day.

I suppose Thanksgiving is the classic example of this axiom: a bronzed tur ..... 
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Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
Posted in

Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
Posted in

Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
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To the Editor,

I was growing up at a time when it looked like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. might one day have a run at the presidency. He had this to say about conflict:

Darkness cannot drive
out darkness;
Only light can do that.< ..... 
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Fri, Nov 30th, 2001
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To the Editor,

I must address Herb Panko's article, "Another View: Some root causes of the September 11 tragedy" in the Nov. 12, 2001 issue of the Fillmore County Journal. He says that "[Christianity, Judaism, and Islam] use ultimate authorit ..... 
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