Hopscotch Honeymoon Part X: Traversing Traverse City, Michigan

After five days in Oshkosh and deluxe dormitory accommodations, I was pleased/relieved to head out early for a new location. Destination: Northport, Michigan, home of Tim’s friends John and Susie Harrison. John and Susie live in Sacramento during the winter and maintain a summer home in the teeny “town” of Northport, half an hour from Traverse City. Since the weather favored our trip across Lake Michigan, we bought life jackets (just in case) and headed out. Here are a few pictures from our short visit on the lake:

We left the lush greens of Wisconsin and headed out over Lake Michigan.
T isn’t keen to fly over large bodies of water in a single engine aircraft, so we bought life jackets, just in case.
We landed at Woolsey Field, approximately in the center of the map. It was to be my first grass strip landing!
When we left on our hazy lake flight, T did not inspire confidence when he told me “I’m going to demonstrate why JFK Jr. crashed.” I said, “How about you just tell me about it instead?” He was referencing how the haze over the vast expanse of water made it impossible to the eye to tell where the horizon was and perhaps in bad weather, it would be easy to get disoriented like the unfortunate JFK.
Pretty little islands dot Lake Michigan.
The deep blue and green made me think ocean, not lake.
I understand now why people actually vacation in Michigan.
Our first sighting of Northport, MI.
We circled around.
Tim got the lay the of land.
I got a scenic view of the peninsula.
I remain awed by the dense vegetation.
Beautiful view.
See what I’m saying? Would not like to be lost in there!
Coming into Woolsey Field.
The grass strip was well maintained.
Silly cyclists stopped to watch us fly over and waved their little hands off.
Our visit to Traverse City landed on the day of their Friday street fair.
Love me some cool architecture.
The high school band played while street vendors sold all sorts of tasty treats.
We visited Cherry Republic, a veritable mecca of cherry creations. I didn’t know this but Michigan is one of the nation’s largest cherry producers. Who knew?
We took the advice. 🙂
I was charmed by the vat of cherry pits and thought the store employee was joking when she said I should climb in.
Yeah, it didn’t take much cajoling to get me to hop on in.
The thousands of pits were actually quite nice to touch. For some reason, I was reminded of grape stomping don’t ask me why.
Couldn’t decide what sign to hold up…
Because T wouldn’t let me have any ice cream, I’ll just have to go back for a visit some day!
Loved the old buildings!
We visited the Traverse City Film Festival, produced by documentarian and Traverse City native Michael Moore. The festival boasted 78 films at 7 (or so) theatres around town. We saw “When We Leave,” a German film about a Turkish woman who escapes a “mildly” abusive husband. If you get a chance, I’d highly recommend this film. It was gut wrenching but beautiful, and me and T are still talking about it weeks later.
This is a man who holds a giant red hat. MY giant red hat, of course.
Relieved of the girly hat, he smiles.
We found a funky three-story bookstore in town and bought cheap clearance books. T’s reading about the history of matter (or something) and I’m reading “In Defense of Nepotism.” Interesting reading all around.
A blurry Traverse Bay.
We waited by the bay for dinner reservations and met an interesting Michigan couple, Kim and Max.
Since Max had an aviation fascination, he and T made fast friends.
If you find yourself in Traverse City, do not leave until you’ve eaten here!
One of the best appetizers I’ve ever had–whipped baked brie and gruyere with an apple-butter drizzle (or something like that), with green apple and rye toasts. Could have licked that bowl in case you were wondering.
The fishes were delicious–Mahi mahi for me and local fav wall-eye for T.
Although I needed it not, I ordered key lime pie for dessert. Thinking about California portions–a bitty sliver–I did not expect this half-a-pie sized piece. Lord, I thought I was going to explode!
I may have to get a cool sign one of these days.
Beautiful landscaping.
Loved the light of the Harrison’s home.
My favorite room! Reminded me of the treehouses in Arkansas, surrounded by tree tops.
The deck is also quite rad with a view of the lake.
John and T are out on the observation deck.
Deck panorama. I decided then that a beach house wouldn’t be so bad.
Bound for Mackinac next!
Can you imagine your own private beach??

Next up: Mackinac Island!!


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