Mike Rowe & Me . . . and Sugar Loaf 9/19/09

Don’t you love it when a plan comes together.  All day long yesterday I tried to find Mike Rowe and his Dirty Jobs film crew.  All day long I failed, even with the help of Jill and others trying to get me to him.  I just gave up last night and posted other people’s pictures of him on the island.

BUT – I awoke this morning with a text message “tip” on my phone.  Mike and his crew were headed for the ferry at 9 a.m.  I was still in my p.j.’s, and hadn’t even had a cup of coffee yet.  No way I could make it to the ferry.  I just sighed and poured my coffee.  Thirty minutes later – another text message.  Mike and his crew were going to be on a 10 p.m. ferry instead.  I had just started on cup of coffee #2 and STILL was in my p.j.’s.  I thought about it longer than before, but ultimately just sighed again and curled up with a book.

At 10:05, another text message.  Mike Rowe himself was in a taxi going to the airport – leaving the island at 10:30.  I looked at Ted. “I gotta go!” I said.  “Please come with me!”

Ted and I flew down the stairs (I did change out of my p.j.’s), jerked off the bike covers, unlocked them, and went barreling through the village and the woods toward the airport.  We pulled up, noted that the taxi hadn’t arrived, parked the bikes, and went inside.

Dennis Bradley, the Assistant Airport Manager, was in his office talking with another gentleman.  He got up when we came in (we know Dennis from the village, and I had been out there a couple of weeks ago taking pictures of the big plane), and said, “Well, hi! What can I help you with this morning?”

“We heard through the grapevine that you had a celebrity leaving the airport this morning,” I said.

Dennis grinned.  “Oh, you mean Mike Rowe?”

“Yes, that’s who I mean!” 

“Yep, he’s taking off at 10:40.”

“Just trying to get a picture of him for the blog,” I said.

It’s now 10:29.  The plane coming for Mike has not arrived yet from St. Ignace, and the taxi bringing him hasn’t arrived either.  We talked about island things for a minute or two, and I asked about the checkerboard table in the middle of the airport terminal.  Dennis said the kids love it when they’re waiting around, and so do the pilots!


A few seconds later, we heard the sound of horses trotting up the road and soon they came into sight.  When they pulled under the airport porch, I could see Mike, Mary Maguire Slevin (Director of the Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau), and another couple on the taxi.  We watched as Mike and Mary climbed down, and Mike grabbed his bags out of the taxi. 

Now here’s where my years as Public Information Director for a large school system in Georgia paid off.  I am used to walking around with my camera in a room full of people who, other than me, are sitting down paying attention to whatever is going on.  It was my job to get the story and the picture, so shyness is not a good trait to have in that position. 

I walked right out that door, walked up to Mike Rowe with my hand outstretched, and said, “Hi, Mike!  I’m Brenda Horton, and I write a blog on the island.  Could I get a picture with you?” 

He took my hand, shook it, and smiled.  Mary (who I had never met), said, “Would you like for me to take the picture?”  (Thank you, Mary!)


We all walked inside and Ted, Mike, Mary, Dennis and I stood around chatting for about five minutes until Mike’s plane landed.  Mary asked me to take a picture of her, Mike and Dennis, which I did.


The plane arrived, and everyone walked outside.  Mary and Mike boarded and took  off for St. Ignace.  Dirty Jobs had left the island, and my mission, which had begun to seem impossible, had been accomplished – thanks to quite a few “tipsters” who helped me out.




Ted and I rode on up to Lookout Point to take the second photograph of the Sugar Loaf series on the fall leaves.  I had snapped the first one on September 15 (first picture below).  There is a definite difference in the shade of the leaves, but still no significant color change (second picture below).  There ARE leaves that are changing elsewhere, however, and next week I will have lots of those to show you.




I’m taking off tomorrow night, to have dinner downtown with Ted and then watch the Georgia vs. Arkansas game with him at the Pony.  Go Dawgs!

Some previews for next week:  A walk in the woods to look at fall colors, an update on the Mr. Kitty Project (see https://bree1972.wordpress.com/2009/08/19/the-mr-kitty-projectevening-walks-82009), possibly A Day in the Life of a Mackinac Island Baker, a beautiful ride along the lakeshore with a look at some mysterious rock formations, a peek at another landmark we had never seen . . . . . .  and that’s just what I know about tonight!  You can bet there will be more by the time Monday rolls around.

See you Monday morning, good Lord willing!  God bless.

17 thoughts on “Mike Rowe & Me . . . and Sugar Loaf 9/19/09

  1. Congratulations! You did it! How exciting! And that’s a great picture.

    I’ve never seen pictures of the interior of the airport. It really is lovely. My brother-in-law, Mark Guldseth, wired the first airport building. Before that there was an 8X8 shack with a pot-bellied stove in the middle of it. This is SUCH a change!!

  2. I am so glad that it worked out just right. great shots,Dennis will like them too. I just found the ariport a few weeks ago when I was being a “tourest” with my bike all by myself one day. It is impressive. The board games inside are lovely. Did you get my message that I work on the Island Mon.-Wed. this week? I can come early,my preference or stay late one day for that long awaited visit.

  3. I knew you’d get the picture! I think it’s even better that it was at the airport where you could actually talk for a bit.

    I too am impressed with the terminal building. It’s been a few years since I last flew from St. Ignace – and I remember the old airport was nothing more than a small building we would huddle in while waiting for the taxi. The new one looks very nice.

    Can’t wait to see your pictures of fall arriving on the island.

  4. Yey! Good thing you didn’t come down at 8 am when I sent you that text since it ended up just being his crew, but I’m glad you found him anyway, even though the taxi driver didn’t bring him right by your house….

  5. Hi Bree we just got back from Michigan. I had hoped to say hi to you.
    I saw so many more things and people this time because of you blog. Jill is great – you two are like Oprah and Gail. (see Jill I remembered!)
    I will send you some pics and will have more to say once I recover from the “ride” – nothing like the ride to Georgia.
    And the girl in the taxi is right – I diod ask her about the condos – she was very funny.
    Almost makes me want to sell my property on the inland lake and move to the island. (which was talked about) hmmmm!

    Take care – Scot

  6. I too, am addicted your blog. I’m on the island right now, staying at the Grand. I keep quoting you and telling my son about things I’ve read on your blog. He has been teasing me and saying that I’d rather meet you than Carlton Varney. We took a private carriage tour yesterday(because you said a tour was a must) and the driver asked me if I wanted to give the tour. Of course I apologized, and said,well, I read so much interesting information on Bree’s blog, I could do it! Hehe.

      • I left this afternoon, but plan on returning next year. We had a great time! The weather was wonderful.( except for getting cold riding to The Woods last night) Carlton Varney was so nice.

        By the way, my son saw your picture on today’s blog and he thinks we look alike.

      • So glad you had a good weekend. Ted and I watched the Ga. vs. Arkansas game at the Pony last night, so it was after 11:30 when we started home. That taxi ride was cold! Thank goodness there was a blanket under the seat – I wrapped up!

  7. I’m taking notes for my trip there next year! Thanks again Bree. Love Fall on the island. Your pictures bring back wonderful memories for me.

    • It was so beautiful last year – the first year we have been here in the fall. Looking forward to seeing if this fall is even better!

  8. I love Mike Rowe and a little sad that I missed him… My husband, son and I were one the Island the week before he was there. Ohh well, but I will be watching for that episode!

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