Diary - Day 24

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Jeremy's Pictures

Day 24 Saturday June 4th Munising MI – Mackinaw City MI

Susan & Richard Cressy

Colin's Picture

 




With Steve Kellerman's expert tuition I 'Rainexed' the windscreen without touching the paint work as the outlook for the next couple of days was rain! This is the first time I have ever been allowed to touch 'The Morgan' and Richard was rather alarmed when I told him what I had done, but was soon mollified when I told him it had been achieved with “expert” guidance. The mosquitoes are still very much in evidence, so definitely a DEET day today.
I had breakfast with Linda Cannon and Alan Marsh who most gallantly tried to find me strawberry jam to accompany my English muffins, he rifled through baskets on every table but to no avail! Richard, meanwhile prepared for the rain and put the roof on the car, something he normally avoids doing as it impedes his view. Many of the MOAers took advantage of the sale of fleeces at a knock down price, preparing for the cooler weather that lay ahead.
On leaving the hotel the rain started and a succession of Morgan’s stopped to protect themselves with hoods up, but not the doughty Fiona Cowley and Lynne Dale Johnson who carried on regardless. We travelled through Hiawatha country, with long winding roads and tall dense trees either side, the sun occasionally showing itself, but it was mostly misty and cold not allowing us to see the countryside at its best. The consensus amongst our group was to forego the visit to historic Fayette Town (a superb historic State site, a photogenic and interestingly preserved industrial town, port and smelting facility that had closed as long ago as 1890 and it was dry! –Ed) and carry on to the Geyser. The rain became torrential and Fiona soldiered on as long as she could before taking refuge in a garage and Richard gallantly helped put their roof on even though Fiona had called him a woos earlier for doing the same.
We were heading for Kitchi-Ti-Kipi which translates as 'Mirror of Heaven' in the Palms Book State Park. Fortunately the rain had stopped and we made our way to the geyser with visions in our minds of bubbling water and showers of hot water raining down. The scene before us was in fact rather tranquil and there was a spooky but quiet, calm atmosphere until we approached the raft that was to take us across the tiny area of water above the geyser and a chorus of voices greeted us loudly, Moira and George Norwood had arrived first - don't they always - and were on their way back accompanied by a motley crew of MOAers!.
After setting off in the raft with Lynne pulling us across the 200 foot wide, 45 feet deep natural spring using the guide cord, Elaine, Phil and Linda appeared on the bank, so we duly back paddled to pick them up. The water was crystal clear and allowed us a fantastic view through the observation window in the middle of the raft. The rather gentle bubbling that we could see was the only indication of the geyser below and the limestone coated trunks and branches of fallen trees provided shelter for the oversized trout which apparently glide through, although we didn't spot any. It was interesting to read the origins of the area and that it had been a rubbish dump cleared by a local businessman and made into this tranquil and somewhat ethereal attraction.


Our next mission when we left the park was a pastie hunt, a delicacy of the area, which had come highly recommended, by Janice and Earl Band. The restaurant we chose did not have the pastie on the menu but Lynne, Fiona, Richard and I enjoyed a veritable feast from the amazing buffet on offer at Big Boy! Colin Cundy however was not happy as he had set his heart on a pastie and refused to eat a thing until he found the elusive meat filled pastry treat. After a detour to Manistique, to allow Fiona to stock up for her new hobby of necklace making inspired by the wonderful Indian jewellery we had seen in New Mexico, we carried on to our destination of Mackinaw City. We only stopped once at Schealls Motel for Colin to partake of the longed for pastie.


As we neared Mackinaw City the landscape changed dramatically yet again to sand dunes, the weather also became cooler giving you the impression of being near the sea. We stopped to view the Mackinac bridge known locally as ‘Mighty Mac', before crossing it. It was very misty but atmospheric; we were able to take photographs but not sure how they will turn out. Our first and abiding memory of the Best Western Waterfront Inn was the number of flies and mosquitoes that plagued us from the minute we arrived. I was relieved to find we had been allocated a room that had an external door that could be closed before opening our bedroom door thus protecting us from invading hordes. Fiona and I headed straight for the swimming pool which had such high levels of chemical concentrations that we thought we may soon be sedated but Philip Mason who had beaten us to it assured us that you soon got used to it. Trudy Hughes thought otherwise when she came in for a cooling swim after cleaning every nook and cranny of Jim's car and soon turned tail suggesting that my bright red swimming costume may end up a pale shade of pink.
Completing our ablutions early we met Judy, Ben and Jane and Howard in the car park and made our way to the bar across the road for an early evening cocktail before the evening banquet.
The Michigan club had arranged a dinner for us and when Richard and I arrived we were warmly greeted by Diane as though we were acquaintances of long standing she had studied the members’ book and was most complimentary about my photo. As usual we thought we were late as everyone who had arrived previously, were tucking in to the salad bar - a plague of locusts came to mind, particularly when Elaine came in and gently reminded everyone that dinner was not scheduled for another thirty minutes! The dinner was a huge success the food was exceptional (a comment endorsed by me and “supreme” in Michael Winner terms- Ed) and the service was friendly and efficient and we managed to catch up with some of the Michigan club that we had spoken to at the hotel earlier and to wish Ben Fryrear a very Happy Birthday. Just before leaving Alan pointed out a couple of tame racoons at the back of the restaurant and we were able to get some great close up photos. Jeremy also pointed out a beautiful, tiny humming bird that was flying so swiftly between the trees that it was hard to see, but with patience we managed to catch it feeding and drinking while Jeremy caught it on video, a charming sight. (the humming bird not Jeremy!)
It was then back to the hotel for one last night cap after filling up with petrol.

 

 
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