Sunday, July 19, 2009


Happy Sunday Morning! It is a beautiful day so far … the sun is shining in an azure sky with just a few fluffy white clouds. It is a welcome difference from the last couple days of heavy cloud cover with a few sprinkles, blustery winds and gray skies. Even though it is still cool this morning, the sun promises to warm us up in no time. We are at the Isabella County Fairgrounds in Mount Pleasant, MI. There are 71 very quiet (a train track is nearby but we’ve only heard a couple trains), grassy, level sites with W/E and a dump nearby. The best part is they honor Passport America with no restrictions so it is only $12.50 a night! That is a nice break for the budget.

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks but guess what? This “old dog” taught herself something new last night that promises to make my blog writing so much easier and I am thrilled! I knew from reading other blogs that it was possible to schedule the time and date for launching text for whenever you chose in the future. Well, I figured out it also works for pictures so last night, I scheduled all my pictures to launch in the wee hours of this morning—five minutes apart and it worked! I think I have discovered a way around “acceleration errors” (from Hughes Net) and Blogger’s stubbornness that frustrates me on Sunday morning when I am trying to load my pictures. I know, I know, it is old news to so many of you but for me it is a giant step in my blogging expertise.

My biggest news is our day trip to Mackinac Island. It was a glorious morning, a bit breezy but the sun was out in all its glory and the forecast was for more of the same. As you may already know, no motorized vehicles are allowed on the island (one ambulance and a police car are the exception). Our 30 minute ride on one of the many people ferries was a sensory overload of beautiful sights … the gorgeous rainbow of blue colors that is Lake Michigan; the 5-miles of Mackinac Bridge spanning the Mackinac Straits and the view of Mackinac Island itself as the boat pulls into the dock. Double WOW with cream and sugar on it!

We disembarked then walked the main street from one end to the other, dodging bicycles, horse drawn carriages and wagons (people and horses have the right of way) feeling like we had stepped back in time, then found our tour. Phil had simplified the whole process by buying our ferry and horse drawn tour tickets on line for a total of $86 for two. The tour took about two hours and for me, it was well worth every cent! After our tour, we found an all you can eat pizza and salad buffet for “linner” then took a horse-drawn taxi up the hill to the Grand Hotel. OMG! It is everything it is advertised to be and more. To keep the “lookie loos” to a minimum, they charge you $10 each to tour the hotel, grounds and THE porch. That small amount of money caused everyone in our taxi to turn away but Phil happily paid the fee in order for me to live my dream as I walked inside. We checked out the lobby where they were serving “tea” for $25 per person but there was a live harpist to entertain you while you sipped champagne and ate tiny sandwiches. I was happy we had just eaten so I wasn’t temped.
As I sat on the 600 ft. porch (longest in the world) and took in the spectacular panorama of green lawn, gardens and vast blue waters of the straits, I felt so fortunate to be there after all these years. Our ride back to the mainland was a bit bumpy and wet for those sitting up front in the lounge as the door to the deck wasn’t sealed very good. No one was allowed on the top deck as the waves were up to 3-4 ft and the wind was blowing pretty hard by then. No one was in any danger, these boat captains are pros and the boats are sturdy and strong but it was exciting as we plowed through the waves. Before we left, we purchased our usual souvenirs including some wonderful fudge (there are dozens of fudge shops) and bought the movie, “Somewhere in Time” with Christopher Reeves and Jane Seymour. Now, I can relive my adventure whenever I want! Even Phil, who takes all this sightseeing in stride, along with me, wholeheartedly recommends this journey back in time for all.

We had a great day trip to Lansing to check out the capital city. It is a handsome old building set up the hill with a commanding view of the city. It was closed so we could not go inside but we walked the grounds and then found a great place for “linner” thanks to our “Carmen” Garmin GPS then took a few miles of back roads on the way home.

We are off to the races this afternoon here at the fairgrounds. Neither of us has ever been to a horse race so it should be exciting!

Until next time,


  1. Hope you enjoyed the horse racing. Sure can't beat the rates at fairgrounds. Our last night on the road was "free" at the one we stayed at.

  2. Sounds marvelous...glad you are having fun!

  3. I have been to Lansing but not to the UP. Now I am disappointed that we did not get up there.