In July we flew into Detroit, rented a car and drove to Bowling Green, Ohio, to visit Scott and Diane. After weeks of being in the dry, brown deserts of New Mexico the greenery of Ohio was a welcome sight. We spent a pleasant morning one day walking through a wildlife refuge in the marshes along Lake Erie. A couple of afternoons we enjoyed strolling through public gardens in Bowling Green.
After the Bowling Green visit we drove up north for a reconnection with the past. The first 18 years of my life, until I went away to college, were spent on the family farm in Keno, the small community north of St. Helen, Michigan. Over the years Keno doesn’t change much but I was surprised as we headed north from St. Helen to see a road sign pointing us to the Keno Area. There had never been a sign there before because very few people even knew it existed. Even more surprising was a highway sign indicating when you were entering Keno.
We stayed with Aunt Joyce who lives just down the road from the farm. The farmhouse is still standing but has been unoccupied for a number of years and is gradually falling into disrepair.
Our one tourist activity in Michigan was the day we drove to the Traverse City area and visited the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. After a stop at the visitor center (where we learned the sad story behind the name of the dunes) we headed out to hike the Empire Bluff Trail. It was a pleasant walk through the woods and led to an overlook where you could view the dune in the distance.
We didn’t drive to the Sleeping Bear Dune but on the road in that direction there was a stop where we got out and climbed up another dune. We then continued around the peninsula to a place that went down to Lake Michigan. Then we were able to say that we did dip our feet in one of the Great Lakes.