Sunday, September 26, 2010

Congresswoman Herseth Sandlin Sighting

I was at the Augustana Vikings football game yesterday and ran into Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin.  It brought back a very memorable encounter with her back in 2008.  My niece Shelby Nelson and I were on our way to Norway in June 2008.  We had finally landed in Oslo, Norway and even though we had been traveling for almost 24 hours we decided to venture out in the city after checking into our hotel.  We come to Parliament and there was a big labor demonstration going on in the park.  We take pictures of Parliament and continued on our walk, thinking we want to walk to the Royal Palace.  It is a long ways off and we are very tired so we settle for a long shot of the building. We head off to the National Gallery.  Shelby wants to see the original paintings of the prints she has in her store, Holsen Hus.  There are magnificent paintings in this Gallery. We head back towards the Parliament and the demonstration, trying to decide where to get something to eat before heading back to our hotel. Shelby says to me that I need to look at these three people who she thinks look very familiar but she can’t place them.  It is Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin, her father Lars Herseth and his wife. They were walking away and I hollered out “Congresswoman Herseth-Sandlin.”  They looked backed and I shouted that we were from Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  She just hooted.  I went up and introduced myself and Shelby.  She was so very gracious.  She said they had just arrived in Oslo as well and that she was being given the Norwegian American Heritage Award on Tuesday at Parliament.  She said that she brought her father and step-mother along as a Father’s Day gift.  We talked about what a small world it was and she asked if we had a camera so we could take a picture.  Her step mother took a picture of us in front of Parliament and she asked that I send the pictures to her.  We had so much fun talking to her.  She was a very genuine and warm person.  Shelby and I were just kind of in shock and laughed to ourselves on what a good fortune it was to run into her at the beginning of our trip.  I reminded Stephanie of that encounter in Oslo and there was that familiar smile and genuine laughter we remembered back in Oslo.  She asked Shelby if she was the one who posted the picture on her website and Shelby said yes.  Another chance encounter with a very important person to South Dakota.  I told her South Dakota needed her and that it was important that she wins in November.  Go Stephanie Go, Win Stephanie Win!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jennifer; What a great story. It truly is a small world. We use to laugh how we couldn't take my father any place without someone knowing him; that even including Europe. Your trip to Norway in 08' had to have been incredible? I just hope someday we can all make that Holsen Trip possible. Here's to Stephanie in November for her big win. We all need good, honorable, people in office. Very rare. Hope you & Pam had a terrific birthday? x Deb