Oct 142008
 

Sunset over Lake Michigan

Although back home now, I cannot leave the images of autumn behind me. From the falling golden leaves to the golden sunsets I bask in the beauty nature threw upon my eyes. In two short days I will return for a fortnight to Santa Barbara to continue helping my uncle in his recovery from having broken his hip. Prior to the Presidential election I will return to Phoenix to vote and then back to California until my uncle has been cleared to once again drive and bear his full weight upon his hip. But for now I want to have as clear a mind as this late afternoon sky possessed, I want to rest in the same calm warm light before once again entering the emotional maelstrom that envelops a frustrated and despressed elderly uncle. Today’s photo was taken a few days prior on Lake Michigan.

Oct 102008
 

Point Betsie Lighthouse near Frankfort, Michigan on Lake Michigan

Stayed overnight at the R&R Motel in Frankfort, Michigan. How could we not? Caroline is, after all, from Frankfurt. Under clear blue skies the day started perfectly. After breakfast at the Crescent Bakery we drove up the lake side to the Point Betsie Lighthouse on Lake Michigan. From there we lazily decended south through orchards and fields, passing many a farm stand and occasionally stopping for apples until reaching Manistee. Frankfort and Manistee were easily two of the most pleasant small towns we visited during this vacation and two that we wish to revisit in the future.

Oct 092008
 

On the Sleeping Bear sand dunes on a windy late afternoon in Michigan

Just moments after I had taken the previous photo of sunset on the Sleeping Bear Dunes,we walked towards another vantage point. What you could not see in the other photo is that the wind was howling. If you look at the grass you will see it blowing to the right and the white fuzziness on the sand surface is a thin layer of blowing sand. I’ve included another photo of the day thus breaking with the tradition of posting only one photo of the day for the second time on one trip because there was something about this photo that caught my eye.

Oct 092008
 

Sunset from Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore overlooking Lake Michigan

As our day went forward there were no regrets about not having turned around. Crossing the Mackinac bridge which is currently the third longest suspension bridge in the world we turned eastward to follow the Lake Huron lake shore. Caroline once more shed her shoes, rolled up her pants legs and lept into the water. With Lake Huron in the bag, we have now visited all of the Great Lakes and the Saint Lawrence Seaway. To Caroline’s bragging rights she has stood in the waters of the Great Lakes, the Pacific, Atlantic, and the Gulf, rivers include the Colorado, Little Colorado, Snake, Mississippi, Columbia, Yellowstone, Ohio, Klamath, Missouri, Rogue, St. Croix, the Animas and many a smaller but no less significant waterway across America. In the eight years since we began this haphazard journey through America we have never failed to be amazed at the sights and people we have met along the way. I can no longer tell you how many times we have sat at a precipice, hillside, forest, sand dune, trail, or roadway and watched yet another golden sunset that fills us with oohs and aahs.

Oct 082008
 

Fall leaves in Michigan

Our inclination is to turn around immediately and retrace our steps so we might witness this perfect landscape once more. I’m not sure who first broached the subject, but fortunately for us, one of us was strong when the other required strength to go forward. After Caroline would convince me that continuing south was what we ought to do, I would relent and agree that was the right course of action. Shortly afterwards, she would begin to doubt her resolve and question if I still thought it were a good idea to return northwards and drive that Brockway Mountain road, but now I was certain we must continue according to plan. And so it went back and forth as we visited Tahquamenon Falls State Park and made our way to the locks of Sault Ste. Marie for an overnight before crossing the bridge and leaving the U.P.