Monday, January 01, 2007

Another Trip to Duluth

We drove up to Duluth this morning. It was a bright day with an utterly clear sky. We took the Interstate most of the way, then took a two-lane hardtop the last fifty miles. It goes through pine and birch forest. The trees were encrusted with fresh new snow, so it seemed as if we were driving through a white lace fairyland. But the road was nasty, a mixture of packed-down snow, slush and bare pavement. The pavement was wet, and the snow was icy; and the highway winds and dips.

About halfway through the fifty miles, an adult eagle appeared and flew over the road, then landed in a ditch next to the road. A moment later, it took off, most likely startled by our car. Four or five crows or ravens took off with it, which suggests there was carrion in the ditch.

"We're going to be okay," Patrick said after we saw the eagle.

After that the road got better. The snow must have fallen in a belt south of Duluth, because we drove right out of it. There was no snow in Duluth.

I thought of the story one of the Wellstone boys told. He and his brother were going to see the place where Paul Wellstone's plane crashed, and they lost their parents and sister. On the way in or out an adult eagle landed on the road in front of their car and just stood there for a moment or two. Someone -- probably a Native American -- told them later that this was a good sign. Eagles are messengers from the spirit world.

I realize this sounds like New Age hooey. But eagles are amazing; and I like the story about the Wellstone boys.

Do I think the eagle made our road better? No. Except in the sense that the sight of an eagle makes life better.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

All best wishes to one of my favorite writers for 2007!

I appreciated the story about the Wellstone boys too.

Love, C.

5:50 PM  
Blogger GDH said...

Googling "'E.P. Thompson' AND midwest" you'll probably find your looked for quote. Ravens are astonishing beings as well

8:50 AM  
Blogger GDH said...

Googling "'E.P. Thompson' AND midwest will probably locate your desired quote. Ravens are pretty astonishing beings as well.

8:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was thinking about you on New Year's
Eve and decided to 'google' since I lost your email addy.(hard drive crash)
I was flying over the north Atlantic and straining my eyes for a glimpse of Iceland but we were to far south I'm sure.
Get in touch when you can.

12:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Eleanor,

Happy New Year to you and Patrick from Betty (lizbryant at yahoo dot com). I was led here from a comment at The Oil Drum, where I often hang out along with Energy Bulletin. It linked to your excellent talk on writing SF during WWIII, thence to your web page and here. My concerns echo yours, with emphasis on climate and peak energy (newest project at I'm semi-retired (PT job nothing to do with state govt, thankfully); Bob is retired and busy with antiwar protests; Andrew graduates from Reed in May in history and French. I plan to spend several months this summer in Portland - well ahead of most areas in working toward sustainability and preparations. I would move there if not for Bob's Atlanta roots. I will have to check out your recent writing! Love to you both and to Cassandra - B.

8:36 PM  

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