TRAVEL JOURNAL INDEX >Trust Us on This One
Lutsen, MN to Devil's Lake, ND 06/29/06 (Day 65)
Trust Us on This One
Anyone who knows us will tell you that we consider being called skeptical a compliment. So when we drive past a tiny shop with a hand made sign proclaiming “World’s Best Donuts” in Grand Marias we look at each other and make that “oh, sure they are” face.
But they smell like they don’t suck, so we wander in to see and taste for ourselves. Exactly one mouthful later we are converts. Perfectly light, moist cake, not too much icing or sugar and not even one hint of greasiness. It’s as if they are fried in angel’s kisses. Seriously. And they don’t even insult you with silly donuts. You know the ones—they’ve generally got pink icing on them. Or sprinkles. Or both. Nope. Just the world’s best donuts and just the classics (cinnamon sugar, powdered sugar, plain, etc). But be warned, once they sell the last delectable morsel they close for the day (usually around 2:00).
We grab a half dozen to go and start heading toward North Dakota for two very good reasons. #1: Who goes to the Dakotas unless they’re boss is transferring them there as a form of punishment and/or they’re running from the law? #2: We got a charming invitation from a man named Dave Kvislen.
Dave is the Service Manager of the Lake Chevrolet dealership in Devil’s Lake, ND and he was kind enough to take the time to look at this very web site and send us an email with an offer we couldn’t refuse: a free oil change. With our trusty Silverado approaching 9,000 miles we feel a long cool drink of the black gold is probably in order, so we email Dave and tell him we’re on our way.
Long before we get anywhere near the heart of the Dakotas, we begin to see and feel a change as it starts to get hot and flat in every direction for mile after mile as we travel through the last of Minnesota. It’s mesmerizing. In Hibbing, MN we don’t even have the heart or the energy to get stop the truck long enough to visit Zimmy’s--a restaurant set up to commemorate the fact that Bob Dylan, aka Robert Allen Zimmerman, was born here.
The Greyhound Bus Company was born here too and Hibbing has the Greyhound Bus Origin Museum museum housed in a replica bus station that looks nicer than any real one we’ve ever seen. But we pass that by too. Somehow the wavy-hot open spaces are irresistible and we just keep moving.
In Itasca State Park in Minnesota we manage to stop long enough to wade through the source of the mighty Mississippi which is barely an ankle-wetting creek at this point. Then we drive through a frighteningly intense lightening storm as we officially enter North Dakota. The staccato flashes of light all around us merely accentuate the flat, nothingness we’re speeding through (remember, this is a state where many roads didn’t have a speed limit at all until the '70s) and make us intensely aware that we are the tallest thing for miles.We pause again in Grand Forks to grab some dinner but, try as we might, we can’t find a restaurant named Grand Forks in Grand Forks (can someone get on that right away please?) so we settle for some faux TGI Fridays type deal.