Monday, May 24, 2010

Madison to Fargo

Dear Faithful Readers,
     Do you know that Madison is awesome?  I surely didn't until this this morning.  I could totally live there.  Soybeans and all.

Sophie and I stopped in Madison, which is about an eight hour drive from Cleveland, in order to visit my cousin Zack and his baby boy Peyton.  Also, we conveniently arrived just in time to get dinner before the finale of Lost.  We.  Are.  Dorks.  It was a lot of fun to see Zack, although in the flurry of visiting I forgot to take any pictures.  Rest assured that Peyton is extraordinarily cute, and very vocal about the fact that I am his favorite person.  Except for Zack.  And his Mom.  And Sophie.

Let it be noted, also, that the Lost finale exceeded both Sophie's and my expectations.  I may or may not have cried.

I went for an exploratory jog the next morning, and this is what I found.

Now turn around and cross the street.  You will find, and inevitably enter, "Fromagination."

Sophie and I love cheese, so rather than eat an overpriced hotel breakfast, we ate here.  A cheese and meat platter and strawberry soup.  And a strange plant-orb.

So now I love Madison.  All of the cheese was local, and super delicious.  The bread and crackers were good, too.  I loved the cured meat, but I always love cured meat.  As I was eating it I realized something sort of strange about European-style, and in particular Italian style eating.  The food either has to be as fresh as possible, or mind-numbingly old.  Is that today's milk?  No?  Let's wait two years and eat it then.  The most exciting food (falling, for your information, on the fresh end of the spectrum) was the strawberry soup.

I am going to be honest with you.  It is hard to beat strawberry soup with anything.  Seriously.  It's SOUP.  Made of STRAWBERRIES.  It's as if someone asked a five year-old what they wanted to eat.  Imagine the following dialogue.

"Honey, what would you like to eat?"

"I want soup!"

"What kind of soup would you like to eat?  We could have chicken soup, onion soup, lentil soup..."

"I want strawberry soup!"

"Honey, you can't have strawberry-"


"But there's no-"


Five year-olds, despite their obvious failings in height and anger management, clearly have brilliant culinary minds.  Strawberry soup is awesome.  The experience in general was awesome.  We really didn't expect to find such a cool place in Madison, or really to find Madison remarkable at all.  They even have a lake!  Superior to other lakes!  Surprises are nice, sometimes.

After our breakfast/lunch (I refuse to acknowledge the existence of brunch) we started the medium-long drive to Fargo, North Dakota, where we are staying for the night.  Tomorrow we enter the strange land that is Canada.  We're trying to get to Edmonton as fast as possible, because we both really like the oil sands.  The oil sands are really what have brought Sophie and I together on many levels.

See you in C-Land.


  1. I am sorry I never made it up to Madison when I lived so close. I heard great things though. I like smallish cities with real culture and cool stuff like that. Boulder would also count. But here I am yet again living in a big city. This is my favorite so far so that's nice.

  2. A great cheese plate is often the only thing one needs to be happy.

    I have also wondered about the provenance of strawberry must have been a five year old, it's so obvious...