It’s been an allergy-filled summer for me, so far, and poor Basil has languished, and months filled with (mostly good) non-Basil distractions, as well. Now we’re traveling — perhaps to less pollen-ridden climes? — and will be doing so for the next few months.
At the moment, Basil and I are in Northern Michigan, where we’ve ridden the past few days with Dr. Diarist’s father. That’s his Cannondale above with Basil, taking a break on the Leelanau Trail on the way to Suttons Bay.
Suttons Bay is a cute little town about 15 miles/24 km north of Traverse City, and is a favorite tourist destination. I mean, really, look at that list: bike, kayak, and paddle board rentals, and winery and brewery bike tours. What else could anyone want?
Dr. Diarist’s mother joined us once we arrived, and we three repaired to the Hop Lot Brewing Company, where Dr. Diarist’s father enjoyed a well-earned brew. (Dr. Diarist’s mother is not a fan of cameras, unless she’s on the opposite side of the lens.)
The brewery is Northern-Michigan-rustic, with evergreens all around, and a patch of hops growing alongside the impressive array of picnic tables. The beer itself got high ratings, too.
The next day, Dr. Diarist’s father and I circumnavigated Traverse City by pedal — the best way possible.
We stopped on a bridge over the Boardman Lake to admire the nearly still water (and our bicycles). The water was transparent today: We could see to the bottom of the lake, and we watched a large fish drifting lazily below.
I took another photo of the unused railroad trestle I’d snapped when we’d taken a simliar ride last year. This is beautiful country; the sky in this picture doesn’t do justice to reality, but the evidence is in that wonderful watery mirror below.
It had rained the previous evening, so the foilage was especially bright and lush. California may be dessicated, but Northern Michigan is doing just fine. (That will last only until the rest of the country starts raiding the Great Lakes, but we can enjoy it now, at least.)
We dodged a massive number of kayaks and their owners once we reached Hull Park, on the Boardman Lake. The armada, dozens and dozens strong, was setting sail in a mass exercise just as we arrived. (I counted 72 in the pictures I took. I may have missed a few.) We stopped to watch the launch and to listen: the group cackled and chattered like an immense (and obstreperous) flock of birds.
Dr. Diarist’s father might be more inclined to take photos of interesting cloud formations than, say, Bromptons, or even other bicycles. (Unlike some people.)
Traverse City’s human population swells in summer, and an amazing number of visitors arrive with boats in tow, which join those already owned by water-loving full-time residents.
And why not? The bay is huge, and swallows up water craft, whether wind- or engine-powered.
Some boat-lovers bring bikes along, too. But these are just the wrong choice: obviously a boat needs a Brompton, don’t you think?
Dr. Diarist is holding down the fort at home, but Basil and I will be here for a long time; then there are more travels in our future. Posts will be slim to non-existent until November, I’m afraid, but I’m hoping Basil and I manage more great runs like these last two, before then, even if I won’t necessarily be recording them here.
Until then, happy summer to all of you, and a fine start to autumn!