Yesterday I took Relia to the Mill City Museum, a museum that shows off the early days of Minneapolis when the mill was king. It's a pretty good presentation and I learned a bunch. The burned out shell down by the river? It has nothing to do with the mill explosion of 1878. It is the remains of the rebuilt mill that burned down in 1991. It is thought that people had broken in and started a fire to warm themselves.
After the museum, it was time to drive home. We ran into an obstacle as Washington Ave was closed by the police. We were about eight cars back so I could still see up to the street. I had heard that the President was in town and I wondered if this blockage was related.
After about a minute, some serious looking black cars zoomed past, followed by a limo and an ambulance. There had been people gathered at the corner and as one of them walked back to her car, I heard her say that Obama had just passed by. A couple of minutes later the police opened the street and we were off.*
I turned on Washington and waited at a light to turn on Portland. There were about ten police cars behind me. Never have I been more conscious of whether my tabs were current!
I told Relia that we were close to the President but she wasn't impressed. I told her that this was the closest I had ever been to a President. She said that wasn't true, since I'd been to the Minnesota Capitol building. There is a little bit of confusion regarding governors and presidents and that's ok. (Frankly, I'm not sure if I've ever been all that close to a governor either. The only big time politician that I've met in person was back when I introduced Paul Wellstone to an assembly in Austin.) I hope that Relia and the rest of the kids get a better chance to meet the President in the future.
*Btw, I don't want to sound upset by being delayed by the motorcade. Big time pols are (unfortunately) targets for nutcases and good security measures are important. I do wonder why presidential candidates don't do more local travel by helicopter, where they won't screw up traffic but I'm sure some smart people have analyzed this issue. If someone gets so honked off by being stuck at an off-ramp that they change their vote, well, that's the risk, right?