Through the water-splashed ferry windows, a glimpse of the Grand Hotel, the Iroquois, and the Chippewa. Cyclists following the never-ending roadway circling the island. Horse-drawn carriages standing on Main – suspended in time. My heart beats more rapidly, and my feet do a happy dance against the ferry floorboards. I am returning to Mackinac.
I woke yesterday morning at 4:30 to an empty bed. I laid there a few minutes, waiting for Ted to return, but when he didn’t, I rose and found him sitting in the dark sunroom with a cup of coffee.
“What are you doing?” I asked sleepily.
“Just woke up and decided to sit out here a while,” he said.
Instead of stumbling back to bed, as I’d usually do in such circumstances, I made myself a cup of coffee and joined him in the peaceful darkness. Bear and Maddie were like “what’s happening – are we leaving again?” But they soon settled with us on the porch and went back to what everyone is usually doing at that time of day – sleeping.
With back-to-back Michigan and Florida trips, we’ve added almost 2900 miles to the odometer in the last 2 1/2-3 weeks. Add to that the trip Ted left on yesterday around 8 a.m. (a “guy” trip to an Atlanta Braves game – and probably the reason he couldn’t go back to sleep), and it all adds up to a hectic, exhausting, but ultimately very fun way to start the summer season! Our everyday routine is a little out of whack, but once Ted gets home from Atlanta (today), I think we’ll get back to normal quickly . . . until we leave again.
I don’t even know where to start, so for this post I’m just going to hit the high points on the Mackinac trip. On Sunday, I’ll catch you up on the beach house and what’s happening at the ri’vah!
MACKINAC ISLAND – MICHIGAN
Returning to the island as a visitor instead of a resident is a little disconcerting. The “perks” of owning on Mackinac are plentiful, and having been privy to that, it’s a little hard to adjust to going back as a vacationer. The biggest single adjustment was going from having a resident’s pass for the ferry to buying tickets – or books of tickets. I confess I was very happy just flashing my pass to board a boat (or not flashing it because everyone at Shepler’s knew us. Of course they still know us, and we now have much longer to chat as we tear those little stubs out of the book). Buying tickets is fine . . . just different. The second biggest adjustment was rephrasing our standard “we have a condo on the island” answer to the question, “Where are you staying?” to “We’re renting a condo here”. Ok, ok, ok – I know I sound like a spoiled brat. I know it. I accept it. I will adjust. Sigh.
What we didn’t have to adjust to was our welcome being any different. Everywhere we went we saw friends, and we gave and received so many hugs during our stay that our mouths stayed permanently stretched into grins of greeting. We loved, loved, loved seeing everyone, and as I mentioned a few blogs ago, it was as if we’d never left – or sold. Friends are friends are friends, and we thank the good Lord everyday for those we hold in our hearts across this beautiful country of ours!
Another adjustment was “working” on the island. Although Ted and I volunteered during our summers there, having a “real” job was a little different. I stayed downtown a lot more than usual this trip – dashing in and out of the two Original Murdick’s Fudge shops on Main Street a few times a day, then combing the streets and boat docks for folks with Murdick’s bags. I had no qualms at all about approaching total strangers and saying, “I’m doing some photography for Original Murdick’s Fudge. Would it be ok to snap a few pics of you holding up your bag/fudge?” I was never turned down. Jill was amazed, and asked, “How do you get people to do that?” I think it’s the Southern drawl, which I admit to pushing a little bit more into the syrupy range when begging for something! I had a blast, and if you go to the Original Murdick’s Fudge Facebook page, you’ll see quite a few of my photos, with more to come.
Being back on the island was awesome. The mixture of scents, noises, sights, and tastes can be conjured up only one place on earth – and that’s Mackinac! Best of all though was . . .
It was an awesome trip, and we can’t wait to get back up there in August! In the meantime, there will probably be another couple of trips south, and on Sunday I’ll catch you all up on the beach house progress. Here’s a peek . . .
See you back here on Sunday! God bless.