Vacation: Day 4

Before I share Day 4, I have to follow-up on our Michigan Tech tour. I forgot to mentioned in the last post (about our Michigan Tech visit) that when we got home, we received a really nice card from one of our tour guides.

THAT is a nice touch.

Anyway, on to the events of the next day.

On Saturday, we decided to take the day and explore even more of the area and some of the surrounding small towns. We had a short list of specific things we wanted to see, but we decided we really just wanted the freedom to “wing it” and enjoy the area.

We started by driving to Eagle Harbor…and oh my goodness, what a beautiful and scenic drive that is!

Isn’t this just the most perfect place to sit? I thought so.

While driving through Eagle Harbor, we noticed there was a local arts and crafts fair going on, so we decided to stop and check it out.

And I’m glad we did! I just love historical sites, and at the arts and crafts fair was a an old one-room schoolhouse: the Rathbone School.

Just past Eagle Harbor, there were more incredible views. (See that very tiny shiny steeple in the distance in the upper right area of this picture? That was our destination.)

On the way to that destination, though, I just HAD to get out of the car and admire the beauty that is Lake Superior. Do you know that the doctor Bobby saw for his skin infection (two days prior) said no swimming, UNLESS he was swimming in Lake Superior. Because the water is THAT clean.

And if you zoom in a bit on that map, you can see where we were:

Then we arrived at a very well-known and much-talked-about bakery: the Jampot. This bakery is run by the monks of the Holy Transfiguration Skete, a Byzantine Catholic Monastery. We picked up a few treats for the rest of the ride and for the morning the next day (a really tasty sweet bread for breakfast!).

The monastery.

Now, I learned about a berry that I had never heard about before that grows up in this area: the thimbleberry. In fact, shortly after this visit at the bakery, we saw some growing off the side of the road and stopped to pick some just so I could have the experience of tasting one.

WOW! These berries are pillow-soft, very delicate, and absolutely delicious. I now wish we had gotten some of this wild thimbleberry jam the monks sold. Next time.

We decided to head to Lake Linden (because there was another beautiful church I just had to see). And yes, I’m obsessed with beautiful Catholic churches and LONG to live in an area that has them (because I currently don’t).

On the way, we discovered that no matter where we were, we couldn’t escape seeing some mention of Florida.

Then we arrived at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Lake Linden. And I thought the church in Marquette made me breathless.

After Lake Linden, we visited Houghton and some of the shops for a bit and decided to take the long way back to our cottage.

We drove through Eagle River.

And this sign is only important as it relates to a good chunk of my childhood during which I had to retrain myself to NOT use the word pop. Why? Because after my family moved to the South, I was made fun of for saying “pop.” I can’t even tell you how comfortable it is being in Michigan.

US 41 starts in Copper Harbor! The same road that goes all the way to the southern end of Florida. Wow!

The next day was the wedding (the job I came up for), so I consider Day 4 the last day of our vacation, really. I photographed the wedding, came back to the cottage and enjoyed one last night sitting on the back porch and admiring the view.

We loaded up the car that night (so when we woke up before the sun rose, we could just hop in the car and go).

And, as one last, final reminder before we crossed the line out of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and entered Wisconsin, Donald picked this up for me when he stopped to get gas.

Of course I opened it and ate it. But, before I took a bite, I said: “Donald! It has a carving of the UP in the bar!”

His response? “Jean, that was a keepsake. You weren’t supposed to eat it.”

Not eat chocolate? That’s absurd.

I think it goes without saying that this trip to the U.P. deserves a Part 2. And we’re hoping we can make that happen in 2020.

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