We hung out with coffee on Marian's back porch to discuss the drive north. It was a beautiful day in the shade with little humidity. We had decided on an early dinner and then packet pickup. Marian and I exchanged pre-race gifts. She gave me a silver necklace with a pendant in the shape of mountains and a crew shirt she had made. She had on the same necklace. I gave her a zippered pouch with zombie gingerbreads on it. I bought myself one too so we could match. I met Thom's middle son Elliot that day who would pick up Marian's youngest from school. He was would compete in a Kendama tournament over the weekend.
Thom and I packed the car. In addition to our luggage and folding chairs, we put a cooler sized refrigerator on one side of the back seat that was folded down. The cooler was plugged into a battery that would keep the temperature constant. The battery was plugged Into the car and would charge while the car was driving. The battery had the ability to charge other devices.
On our way to Lutsen we stopped in Hinckley for Tobies pastries. The last time I went to Minnesota was for Grandma's Marathon for my 40th bday, Marian recommended the caramel pecan rolls. I wanted to relive the joy of that roll. The dimensions of this roll is like a tesseract. I am happy to confirm that it was as good as last time, maybe better. We drove to Jay Cooke State Park while eating our rolls. The calories were negligible since we were bound for an ultra marathon. We stopped at the park to wait for Thom and his eldest son Henry to arrive. We walked across the bridge to the trails to watch the St. Louis River. I noticed the water was orange. Marian told me the color was due to the iron in the rocks. I had not seen Marian in person since 2020. Work had moved her to Minnesota during the pandemic. We kept in touch via email, text and Marco Polo. We had great conversation during the drive.