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:: Tuesday, October 17, 2006 ::

Vacation 42° 46'N 86° 4'W

I decided I wanted to go somewhere while on vacation. I had a few options, but since I had to work one day in the middle of the two weeks off (don't go there...) several options fell through. I had thought first that driving around Lake Erie would be cool. From London, via Detroit counter clockwise back up to Buffalo and Niagara Falls. And then back via Hwy 3. Check out the port towns n such. Well, Buffalo got hosed with snow - over two feet. So I ruled out that. Then I thought a cheap flight to Hawaii sounded neat. And they had a significant seismic event. I had a lot of pictures I could do with people. And did do some, but I thought going away would be good too.

So I thought finally I would go to Michigan. I had picked up an AAA/ CAA travel book some time ago and began to read it. I came up with a clockwise coastal tour. Go from Port Huron accross to Holland, and up the Lake Michigan shore to the top of the southern peninsula to Mackinaw City and back down the Huron side n back across.

I crossed the border at about 330pm today. The Bluewater Bridge at Sarnia was super slow, but at least I wasn't a trucker. they were backed up forever! Security was normal-ish. but as I approached the border, I didn't recall seeing before the xray scanners at each lane. The DHS or border guy was pretty easy going but still you always have that moment crossing the longest undefended...

It rained the whole way. light or heavy. doesn't matter. I stopped three times. to stretch my legs and to take a leak. And a pleasant surprise: there are actually Timmies deeper into MI than only at Port Huron. Seeing them on the highway exit signs was cool. Oh, and MI State Troopers use dark blue Blazers or Denali's for their speed traps. That's another wrinkle when you are trying to pay attention to the speed when you are used to KM and everything is in MPH. But 70MPH is pretty nice to pump along at (around 120kph).

Speaking of pumping. Gas. $2.19 a gallon. Even with the conversion of USD to CAD thats about 60-62 CDN cents a liter with my late nite math brain operating. About 20 to 25 cents cleaper than London at the moment.

I got in to Holland around 7pm. It was getting dark and the roads were a little confusing with two highways not going East to West or North to South but seeming to cross eachother more than once. I took the wrong offramp n got turned around. Lucky for me, Leanne n Chris loaned me the GPS reciever for the MS streets n trips and I fired up the laptop and found where I was - or where I wasn't - and where I should be. I plugged in the hotel location and it told me how to get there and tracked my position as I got closer - I had the laptop running on the passenger seat - police car MDT style. And when I got here it was pretty much bang on. perhaps 30m off where I was in the parking lot.

I checked in and found there was nothing in the dark here to do so I went in search of food. I hit Meijers (huge food stores here in MI) and Target. Fun to poke around as they have product we don't. I picked up a Gerber multitool as I can't seem to find my Leatherman at home. But I resisted anything else at this point.

Tomorrow, I am going to head up the coast from Holland and see what I can find and hopefully take some good pics. As I was telling Mandy tonite on IM, it's been some time since I have taken non people pics. Be interesting to get back into it. I don't like not having creative control. Even at the football games this year it wasn't the same. But it's all good. Change is good. keeps me fresh. And I know there are about six people back home itching to work with me on some pics, so I have something to look forward to when I am back.

More posts to follow if I have time. I did book places to stay with WiFi so as long as it is online, I will be.

Carpe Diem

:: Mike Wood 23:59 [+] :: 0 comments


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