Our non-stop week came to a screeching halt this morning when we awoke to rain, wind, and low temperatures that haven’t risen more than a degree or two all day. In fact, at 11:30 this morning, it was 38 (with a wind chill of 30), it was raining, and the wind was seriously blowing.
I had planned to walk downtown and photograph my god-horse Teddie leaving the Island for the winter, but I totally wimped out on that because of the weather. And – because I’m such a wimp – I also didn’t get to meet a pair of blog readers Jill had told I would be at the dock this morning. I felt SO bad about that!
GOING BACK . . .
Back in July, during a thunderstorm, an enormous red oak at Wawashkamo Golf Course fell during high winds.
Why is that tree falling important? Well, I’ll tell you . . .
In one of the first actions of the War of 1812, British troops surprised and captured Fort Mackinac from the Americans on July 17, 1812. Two years later, 750 American troops attempted to recapture Mackinac Island. To counter the American attack, British, Canadian, and Native American troops took up positions on the fields of Michael Dousman’s farm. On the afternoon of August 4, 1814, the two forces met and fought the Battle of Mackinac Island. The Americans were defeated, and the battle left Mackinac in British hands until the end of the war.
Pellerito arranged for a large cross-section of the tree to be examined by Dean Reid, a forester. Meticulously counting each ring and allowing for the height at which the section was cut, Reid determined the age of the tree to be 207 years old. Though very small at the time, there’s no doubt that this red oak was present during the battle and can be designated a “witness tree”.
The remains of the fallen tree are in storage, and there is interest in using the rings of the tree to show a natural timeline for the island. Now how cool is that!
CATCHING UP . . .
EXCITING THINGS TO COME . . .
Before we leave we’re expecting a last-minute visit from Jason and Blair from Atlanta. Jason has always wanted to be on the Island for the Halloween parties downtown, and this year they are trying to get up here for that. If they make it, they’ll be leaving the Island on Oct. 30 (the parties are the weekend before that), and we’ll be leaving a few days earlier than we thought. We were planning to leave on Sunday, the 4th, but we’ve just learned there will only be two ferries off the Island on Sundays after Oct. 31 (when Arnold Transit becomes the sole winter ferry), and the first doesn’t leave the Island until 12:30. There’s no way we can make it home with only one night on the road if we leave after noon. So we’ve had to rethink that, and we’ll probably leave on Friday, Nov. 2, when there’s an 8 a.m. boat.
Big news for the coming week! Jill and I are going on a road trip to see one of my most loyal fans. Lowell Green and his wife Faye have been reading Bree’s Blog practically since I wrote the first word four summers ago, and Lowell has loved Mackinac Island since he worked here as a young man. I begged and begged them to come to the Island so we can show them around to all the places he’s talked about in comments over the years, but so far, no luck on that.
So, Jill and I decided to just go take a little of Mackinac to them! We leave on Wednesday, spend the night with Jill’s parents in Lansing that night, then go have lunch with Lowell and Faye on Thursday – we’ll be back on the Island that night. We are SO EXCITED, and I think Lowell and Faye are too. Can’t wait to share our visit with you!
Hoping everyone enjoys the weekend. The days are flying by now, and “things to do” are beginning to be turned into lists so nothing is forgotten. Can’t believe we’ll leaving in four weeks – just . . . . cannot . . . . believe . . . . it.