A Good Yarn

Monday, February 06, 2006

Celebrating Winter

I came back from sunny, warm Mexico to sunny, not so warm Minnesota just as we started celebrating the ice and snow, the Winter Carnival. I know our friends from the warmer climes don't really understand why you would celebrate Winter in Minnesota, but that's just the way we are. After I dropped off Finbar for his surgery, I attended a conference in downtown St. Paul and during a break I checked out the ice sculpting in the park across the street. It's pretty cool to see how they create these artworks.

It's kind of hard to tell, but he's using a chainsaw to cut the ice. The Winter Carnival hadn't actually started yet, so there weren't many sculptures yet. This was the prettiest one:

I like that one because you can see some of the pretty buildings downtown as well as some trees without leaves, which I love. Here's a prettier picture of the sculpture, though:

Of course, it wasn't too cold because I wasn't wearing a coat when I took these pictures. In fact, we went through a nice warm spell when I returned from Mexico, so we have almost no snow. I drove by this park again on Thursday and all of the ice sculptures were sad little blobs of ice. So sad!

As I've mentioned before, I get together with some women from law school every now and again for dinner and a movie. We had a slight communication problem in planning the movie portion, so only two of us ended up at the movie. Happily, I was one of them and it was a great movie!

I really liked this film a lot. As I'm sure you all know, it's about a group of men who are secretly dispatched by the Israeli government to assassinate 11 men as revenge for the kidnapping and murder of 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics. I found it really exciting and was on the edge of my seat often. It also is really dense, with a lot of symbolism and heavy content. So you could enjoy it on either or both levels. There are a lot of parallels to be made to the political situation today, especially with Hamas winning control of Palestine. I thought Spielberg did an excellent job of showing how violence just begets more violence and doesn't solve any problem, but also showing why Israel felt the need to respond by intercutting the athletes' kidnapping and murders throughout the film and certain debates by characters. Eric Bana was really excellent as the leader of the team, who starts as an idealistic patriot and ends up completely paranoid and anxious.

After the movie we met up with a few of our other friends and had dinner at Restaurant Alma. It was my first time there and I loved it! Everything I had was really delicious. I started with a Warm Brie and Belgian Endive Salad and then had a Cavatelli Pasta with a Pheasant Ragu for the main course. So good! For dessert I had to have the chocolate souffle with the chocolate ganache because I was still obsessed with the souffle I had in Mexico. It was almost as good as that one. This restaurant is a little pricey, but I would highly recommend it.