It was cold and bleak in Minnesota. What to do with two small children, extended family visiting from disparate points, and temperatures hovering around -10 Fahrenheit?

Mall Of America, of course!

I will admit to spending not one, not two, but three full days at the mall. I walked all three levels in both directions. The perimeter is approximately 6/10 of a mile, so I managed to get a minor (if culturally and hypsometrically flat) “hike” in during my visits.

Fun and wet: riding the log chute in the amusement park. Fun and pricey: full-motion WWII dogfighting against my brother.

I have my limits, though. I will probably not want to set foot in another mall until, say, Christmas 2012. Mayans, beware.