Around noon Tuesday I said goodbye to the Hagertys in St Charles and traveled to the airport in a taxi. I had waited a little too long before I booked the planeticket, so I had to purchase a seat in first class. It really wasn't worth it. The soda was served in real glasses and the seats might have been a little more comfortable, that's the differences I noticed. After half an hour on the ground waiting in line and one hour in the air, the plane landed in Minneapolis. The hotel was not that far away, the taxi ride was fairly short. It's a nice hotel, but the area it's located in is not the best. The only place I could get any food was KFC (fast food). I ordered a chicken salad and had to wait 20 minutes for it. It gave "fast food" a new meaning. But it wasn't that bad food and I wasn't in a hurry, so I shouldn't complain.
Yesterday (Wednesday) I took the bus from the transit center just outside the hotel and changed to lightrail after a five minute ride. The lightrail is a short modern train, and it took about 15 minutes to the center of Minneapolis. I walked over to the new (2006) public library and visited every floor (4) to see all of it. Many years ago I did my internship here (at the old building), and it was interesting to see what they had changed from that time. It is all in glass and concrete, not much decorations, low book cases in the first half of the room, high in the back. It was a popular place, all the computers were occupied.
After a quick lunch at an almost empty Hard Rock Cafe, I took the lightrail all the way to the end station - Mall of America. It's the largest mall in this country with an amusement park, restaurants, cinemas and 520 stores. No, I didn't visit all of them. But quite a few. Did some shopping, naturally, but only some souvenirs and two tops in a clothing store. Also had dinner there before I returned to the hotel by rail and bus in the evening.
Today I made use of the last minutes of the bus pass I bought yesterday and got on the southbound bus for a ten minute ride. I arrived at Kathy's place just before 11 a.m. Several of the Frank Nelson descendants gathered there to have a very tasty lunch (these Swedes can definitely cook). We had a good time chatting about basically everything, but family matters in particular. A couple of hours later we all drove up to the American Swedish Institute, to view the Leroy Anderson exhibit. It was very well done, but we missed a typewriter! It seemed like the exhibit wasn't completely finished (the official opening of it will be on Saturday), so there might be some more things added later. Apart from the large information boards, there were some musical instruments, a sleigh, album covers, handwritten scores and some of Leroys clothes. The dvd documentary was running on a screen also. We returned to Kathy's place for coffee and even more talking afterwards. It was very nice to see the Nelsons again.