Published: July 1st 2008
June 27th 2008
Monday, June 23rd-27th
Driving through unknown towns, in an unknown state towards a brand new destination can be a little scary, in a good way. It's nice to step outside of your comfort zone and see what you're capable of. For me, this journey to Traverse City, Mi, was just that. Trying to stay as cheap as possible, my home for the next two nights is Motel 6. As basic and bland as it is, the location is amazing. It's right on the water - the East Arm Traverse Bay to be exact.
Still without a phone charger, and now in the habit of finding local verizon stores for a courtesy charge, I was shocked to find no such stores in town. So I set out to buy a charger this time. This task actually took my entire evening. Bought the wrong one at Walmart, had to go back to return it. Tried Best Buy: closed. Bought one at Target, but it was so expensive, I figured I'd try to find a free place to charge it the following day rather than open the new one.
Tuesday I got up and ran along the water for an hour. It's
so beautiful here - the water, trees, sailboats, beaches...it's kind of a resort town, but it's a big town too. In the afternoon, I spent a few hours reading and laying out on the beach. Back to Best Buy, then finally Radio Shack - finally! They did it! While waiting for my phone to charge, I walked through the downtown and window shopped. It's not as much fun when you can't buy anything. And it's not that I can't actually buy anything, but the car is getting too full! We can't fit much more stuffin it.
I decided that I was enjoying my alone time so much that I'd really step outside of my comfort zone and go see a movie by myself in the evening. From the outside, the city theater is looks small, kind of like the Valley Art Cinema down on Mill Ave in Tempe - there's only one theater inside. They were showing the Helen Hunt movie "Then She Found Me". I was surprised that I wasn't even self conscious being there alone like I thought I'd be. That's a big step for me.
In the morning I drove an hour and a half
to pick Rob up from his "guys golfing trip" and we headed back to Traverse city. First off, we found our campsite - another great location directly across from the beach. Then we headed up the Leelaneau Peninsula in search of a distant, remote beach to layout on. A local resident in Northport, the northernmost city on the Peninsula, sent us in the direction of a beach named Christmas Cove, which is at the very tip. This beach is gorgeous and secluded. The water is cold, but the shades of blue are spectacular. We happened upon a local woman who was searching the shores for stones, as we later learned, Petoskey stones (Michigan's state stone - does every state have a state stone?) Jen quickly became fascinated with these stones and has developed a stone polishing fetish. There's likely a trip to the rock shop to pick up the necessary supplies in our near future. Believe it or not there's a definite technique for polishing your own pet Petoskey stones. Until then, Jen's content just holding them in her hands and rubbing them; even in her sleep.
Upon our return to our campsite we found that our once quiet
The Petoskey stones Jen has become obsessed with!
home had been turned into a compound of multiple families, yelling children, and Christmas lights - in June! Apparently in the camping community, hanging colorful lights around your campsite is the norm.
The next morning, after a quick jog, we opted on a relaxing day at the public beach across the street; good choice. The day consisted of laying on the beach, swimming (reluctantly for Jen) in the Grand Traverse Bay, hitting up a happy hour, taking a nap, and polishing off more wine. Yes, it's a hard life we're living this summer.
Friday morning we ran again, then set off on a day long trip up Old Mission Peninsula and wine tasting. The nice thing about the wineries on this Peninsula is that the tastings are all free; what a great bonus. We still ended up purchasing several bottles to take home, I guess we will just have to see how many actually make it back. So, we took advantage of it and hit up six of them. The region is known for it's Reislings, sweet whites, and cherry wines. Unlike most fruit wines, the cherry wines in this region are generally very spicy as opposed to
Northport on the Leelaneau Peninsula
Our first stop before Christmas Cove
being very sweet like typical fruit wines; they also go very well with chocolate, particularly dark chocolate. After our day of wine tasting we were headed for a much anticipated trip to Torch Lake to spend the weekend with Rob's friend Ryan at his cabin on the lake.
There are more photos below