“R U 218?” A simple question provokes a warm answer.

“R U 218?”

The State of Minnesota is divided into a few different area codes.  Where Minneapolis used to be a simple 612, it is now intertwined with 952 to the South, 763 to the North and St. Paul 651ing it to the East.

But the Minnesota Northland is a vast 218.


In 218, there are thousands of lakes with many thousands of lake cabins, Rustic lake homes along the North Shore of Lake Superior, and countless island cabins nestled in the lakeshore wilderness.  By the kitchen counter in many of these places, next to the cribbage board, a deck of cards, and an old area phone book, there sits a land line telephone.  Many are even dial rotary phones.  In these places, phone numbers are just the last 4 digits.  Yea, you have to dial the 3 digit prefix, but it’s the same everywhere on the lake and in town.

Simple life.

Simple times.

But now we text.

And it ain’t so bad.

On this cool late spring evening, as one fires up the sauna, memories of good times resurface with cabin neighbors down the path.  Folks you haven’t seen all winter but thanks to common interests and close geography, they are welcomed warmly back on the dock and on the sauna bench.

“R U 218?”

“Just got up.”

“Sauna’s going.  Come on down.”

“Be right there.”

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