Ice Shanty on Lake of the Isles

There's a chain of a few small lakes that runs through uptown Minneapolis. I lived near one when I was in town, in a low-rent rundown mansion surrounded by much nicer homes. This chain of lakes was horribly polluted with runoff from lawns, planes flying over them and cars driving around them, but the city did a good job otherwise. They were all no-wake zones, so they were great for canoes and small sailboats. During the winter, areas would be converted into ice skating rinks, and a few hardy souls would sit in the middle of the lake in freezing temperatures and wind to ice fish. Seasonal fishing shanties on the lake were outlawed, mostly because the lakes were surrounded by mansions that didn't want their views marred, but also, I think, because of the drunks. Every so often, some guy driving home from the bar would get it in his head to drive out onto the lake and spin his car around for awhile. Watching the headlights dance around the lake until he got stuck and the police arrived was one of my favorite things. Whenever I watch headlights skate across the ceiling, it always reminds me of winter in Minnesota.

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