The first day of my training for work was the coldest day the town had had in four years.The guy thanked us for showing up. We were about an hour and half north of Minneapolis. The temperature schedule for the week looked like this ...

 I was already well aware that I had not packed properly. I mean how do you dress business casual for those temperatures. It was all I could do to resist packing my granny sweaters. Once I got into the training room I was pretty good for a while, but when I sit to long my blood pressure drops, ala meditation, and then I start to get cold. Basically I ended up wearing my puffy jacket in class most of the week. Luckily they had brought in some hot water for tea, which I slugged like I was in a cafe in Istanbul.

This training was full of a lot of new experiences for me. I had never been on a manufacturing floor before and I was immediately struck by the hierarchical class nature of it. It's a little bit like a medieval fiefdom except the people are much nicer than I imagine they were in that time period. I'm sure no one else noticed but I noticed nuance in a way that is uncommon.

It was four full days of information that mostly didn't apply to me or what I will do with this company, but it was nice to meet people that I will be working with. It is always easier to work with people once you have been face to face with them and had a laugh. The training was very informative and at the end of the fourth day my brain had shut down. It was a nice reminder of how much I prefer learning by doing instead of in the classroom. I don't think I have spent that much time in a classroom with power point since University.

The weather was one of the most interesting things about this part of the trip for me. I was just stunned by how it affected the body. We walked out of dinner Monday night (their treat, very nice), and literally coughed and gasped as that first gust of cold air hit our lungs. It was involuntary, almost a bodily natural defense. I have never experienced anything like that air. Every time I stepped out this happened to me, especially when I decided that I couldn't lose any time on my workout plan for Nepal. I was getting up before training to go to the gym down the road from the hotel, they had a partnership, to work out, freeze and then go to work. It seems pretty crazy now that I look back on it.

One thing about this training and about all of my short time in Minnesota was the people. They were all so nice and helpful. I never felt like I couldn't talk to someone about something. They didn't seemed closed off or too busy as is so often the case on the East Coast, we are always in such a rush. A few people asked me if I would go back to Minnesota, I said yes but not in the winter.