Monday, May 9, 2011

Mayo Clinic Trip - "Hans the Cheese Curd-er"

Guest post tonight from my wonderful mother because I'm too tired right now.  :)  She'll fill you in on Hans and our adventures yesterday.  Enjoy!  :)

Yesterday was a very long day of driving for us, but the highlight of the day was no doubt our visit with a sweet kid we named "Hans".   We had already stopped a couple of times during the drive and it seemed that everyone we met was disgruntled or indifferent.  We tried our usual friendly banter with them,but our smiles were met with blank stares and cold shoulders.  Hmm...a strange way for people to act, especially on Mother's Day when one of us was obviously a mother!

After about 8 hours of driving - enjoying the enchanting farms, incredible windmills and rolling hills - we decided to stop for a walking break. While we hustled (ok, I know, hustling with Callie is a bit different from my normal hustle) around an outlet mall, we noticed once again how indifferent people seemed.  Their "Sarah Palin-like accents" were hysterical to us, but they seemed to lack her pleasant personality.  

We both had a taste for something sweet and McDonald's 69 cent ice cream was not going to do on this Mother's Day.  Surely, we figured,  with so many dairy cows and cheese stands lining the road that somebody must have some ice cream.  Stopping at the first store, we tumbled out of our little car and were greeted by a giant (truly, at least 8 feet tall!) mouse.  Inside we discovered literally hundreds of yummy cheeses and the famous cheese curds.  Callie and I tried to figure out where these cheese curds are made - why do they only sell them in Wisconsin?  She finally gathered her courage and asked the boy behind the counter, who proceed to patiently explain the process.  

It was then that I spotted the ice cream!  Not only was there ice cream, but inside that old freezer case was one of our very favorite flavors.  A trip down memory lane presented itself as I remembered picking blueberries with our children and then eating the delightful blueberry/waffle cone ice cream, which was the orchard's speciality!  This seemed like the best Mother's Day, after all!

Callie ordered a waffle cone to split and it was then that we noticed the "Cheese curd specialist".   He took her order with a smile and then fished around in his pocket for the change we were missing!  This boy's behavior was starkly in contrast with every other person we had met so far on this trip.  At the mention of "Blueberry Waffle Cone" ice cream, he quipped, "That's my very favorite kind of ice cream!"

He proceeded to scrub his hands - honestly, he could have been preparing to perform surgery!  At one point I began to count the seconds go by,  wondering just how long he would keep this up!  At long last, he picked up a clean scoop and began stuffing generous scoops of ice cream in the crispy waffle cone.  We'd only ordered two scoops but it seemed he managed to cram at least four in there, all the while chattering happily with us.

His sweet service to us -  answering silly questions about cheese curds and happily scooping delicious ice cream - made such a difference in our day.  We knew he needed name and "Hans" seemed to fit.  The next 30 minutes we immortalized Hans and made up all sorts of interesting stories about how he, Mr. Congeniality,  ended up in this unfriendly place. 

At any rate, on this Mother's Day I was reminded that even the most humble work, done with a happy heart, can be a blessing.

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