Sunday, August 7, 2011

Hitching a ride

Weekends are typically slow times for blog updates for everyone that I follow.  For some reason, I have chosen to be a bit more prolific as of late.  We could explore the reasons, but it probably would not lead to a satisfactory answer, so I will refrain.

Right now I am sitting at my parents' house with three dogs, listening to the barks of two and watching the attentive listening of the third.  My mother is at work and my father has taken a day trip out to Brooten.  I think that I may put on some better clothing and visit my mom at work when I finish this entry.

Last night, I was able to meet up with some friends for dinner.  Two of them are regular readers of this blog - so HI Bill and Rox!  We had a lovely dinner at the Downtowner in St. Paul followed by dessert at Cafe Latte.  Always lovely.  The other friend on this outing was Jill who was gracious enough to be the driver.  Now that I have shared how much I love being driven, you know why I truly appreciated this.

We had good conversation and good food, and the only "odd" occurrence came after dinner on the way to the car. 

From my vantage point in the restaurant, I had a pretty clear view of the host/hostess desk and entrance.  As most of my focus was on my dinner companions, I did not take great notice of the other diners comings and goings. 

Towards the end of our meal, I did notice a man wearing a somewhat bright Hawaiian-style shirt conversing with the host, but that was mainly because of his shirt.  I might have noted that he was alone and that there did not seem to be any effort to seat him at a table, but I did not.

It turned out that this man had a story to tell and some requests to make.  When the restaurant staff was unable to help, he decided to approach Bill and Roxanne as we exited the restaurant.  They politely conversed with him as we walked to the parking lot while not complying with his request for transportation assistance or money to get transportation to his intended destination of the Greyhound Bus Depot in downtown Minneapolis.

I do not share this story because I want to make any kind of social point.  I share it because of his claim that he had been hitchhiking on the freeway and was stopped by the police.  Of course, I have no idea if this was true, but the idea is strange and a bit interesting.

It is my understanding that back in "the day," hitchhiking was not uncommon.  In fact, I think that one or more of my parents may have done it.  They are both alive today, so it did not end terribly for them.  So what happened?  Too many bad eggs on both sides of the equation, I would guess.

As for this man, I have no idea where his real story began or where it ended last night.  I suspect if he continued to accost customers leaving local restaurants and bars, there may have been a complaint.  Perhaps the police showed up and were able to escort him to Minneapolis.  Or maybe it was all part of a hidden camera piece for some low budget/low viewership TV show. 

If so, keep your eyes peeled and let me know if you see us.  I will be the one walking out in front of the group with my friend Jill, exchanging nervous glances and wondering if he is going to follow us all the way to the car.  (He did not.) 

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