Mackinac Island

Mackinac Bridge, most of its five miles.
We began our two week trip to the Midwest in the Straits of Mackinac, Lake Michigan to the south and Lake Huron to the north.  Crossing the straits on the Mackinac Bridge brought us to Michigan's Upper Peninsula and Saint Ignace where we spent two nights at the Sunset Motel.  Sunday morning we were up early to catch the first ferry to the island that also made a side trip under that very bridge.

Matched Belgian Horses
The day was spectacular with temps in the seventies and rarely a cloud to be seen.  It could not have been a more perfect day to spend on the island.  No automobiles are permitted on the island.  Transportation is by carriage or bicycle.  We opted for a carriage tour to give us an overview of the island.  Fun Fact:  there are more horses--more than 500-- on Mackinac than permanent residents--fewer than 500.  Another Fun Fact:  The horses winter on the mainland because it is less expensive to do that than transport hay to the island all winter.

Ste. Anne Church
The carriage tour was filled with all the expected experiences, like Marilyn finding a bargain!  But there were also some nice surprises like The Arch, Fort Mackinac, a black smithing demonstration, historic houses, strolling, fudge, ice cream, OK, and more fudge.  While we waited for a table at the Pink Pony, Marilyn cruised the shops along Market Street and I investigated some more historic structures.

The proprietors of the Sunset Motel had recommended the Pink Pony and we were not disappointed.  We end up with a dockside table and enjoyed a late and leisurely lunch.  The calamari were the absolute best I have ever had.  Of course the view was active and pleasant.  My companion was part of that beautiful view.

After lunch, we began our own walking tour of the town.  We enjoyed all the wonderful gardens and plantings along the streets and sidewalks.  We also spent time interacting with the black smith.  He was a math teacher who went to a free black smithing experience and then never looked back.  You could tell he was a teacher by nature by the way he answered all our questions and genuinely seemed to enjoy doing so.

Turd Herder
While Marilyn was scoping out a shop, I met this fellow as he walked by.  I told him I liked his shirt and we had an interesting conversation.  As he was getting on his way, i asked him if he worked in science.  He said, "In a way.  I am a turd herder."  To my clearly confused look, he said, "I'm in solid waste management."  Of course.  Then his final words after we talk about science were, I must say, profound.  "Head toward enlightenment and turn right at happiness."  Apparently he has the time to ponder things as he herds those turds.

As the sun began to get low we strolled up to The Grand Hotel, paid our ten dollar admission fee, and enjoyed eavesdropping on the all the swells who were in the proper dress and attending a party on the world's longest covered porch.  You can look it up.

While waited for the 8:00 ferry we took in the charming sights along a quiet and calm Market Street that was hectic and busy when we arrived that morning.

You can view many photos of our day on the island in our Google Photos album by clicking here.

The next morning we left for our next three days in Appleton WI visiting Meg, Heather, Harry and Bronwen.  But before we left we had to experience the most widely advertised Upper Peninsula delicacies:  pasties.  We saw signs for this everywhere including entire eateries devoted just to these whatever they were.  We were mispronouncing them as paste-tees.  They are correctly pronounced past-tees.  We delayed our departure till the "best pastie place"  according to our proprietors opened.  We our breakfast pasties and then headed off.  If you want to know more about pasties, click here.


  1. Picture post card beautiful. Looks charming and calming for soul and mind. Glad for you.


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