I have to admit something – I am a Food Network junkie. Right now they have an episode of Rachael Ray’s Tasty Travels about the Twin Cities. One of the locations that is mentioned to get ethnic cuisine is a place called “Eat Street“. I remember in the time that I was up there (about 4 years ago or so), one of the things I did for a class was to go to Eat Street to make a map and discuss the area and why it was so diverse.
Well, I don’t remember how that all came out, but I do remember some of the things – in particular all the stores that sold VCD discs, along with Karaoke songs. I also remember the variety of shops – from the Asian grocery markets, to the drug store that was closed, to the laundromats, and even the little grocery store that was there who had phone cards for cheap calls to Mexico and the various homelands of the folks in the area.
During my time in the cities, one thing that I liked to do was just to get on the bus and take a trip – usually down to the Mall of America; I’d never spend anything (except maybe on some food). In fact, most of the time I usually got onto another bus which went around the southeastern part of the metropolitan area and wound up at a different mall. The best thing is that I never got lost when I was riding around in the area; the closest I came was one time when I wound up at a 5-way intersection, but I got a bus to go the other way and it was all good again.
That is one thing that I liked about being up there – you could actually get public transit that went beyond the city limits of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Where I am now, the only way to actually get into the city is by taking a commuter bus that has a limited schedule. Not only that, they don’t allow you to transfer to the city buses when you get there; thus you have to pay up to 6 fares –
1. (optional) Shared-Ride Taxi to bus pick-up site
2. Bus into city
3. City bus (you get a transfer that I think is good for an hour and a half)
4. City bus return
5. Regional bus return
6. Taxi return
Somewhat ironically, they advertise the bus as a way to save gas; it’s somewhat true, just so long as you’re in the city to begin with, or you are going to a spot (by yourself) that’s on the regional bus line. 😉