Saturday, April 30, 2011

About Fairy Tales and Reality

Prince William and Princess Catherine, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge
Titles are explained in detail HERE.
The Fairy Tale
I was not planning on watching the royal wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William  but after a busy day we relaxed in the evening with a BBC Canada replay of the day's events for an hour or two.  The dress was simple and beautiful, the couple are very likable and seem to be in love and know each other well.  As someone from Charles and Diana's generation I have to say it's sad that Diana was not there but it was a happy occasion nonetheless and we can always use some joy in the news.

Real Life
The story is not complete without a nod to reality.  Like the cute picture of one of the little bridesmaids who looked a bit unhappy in the infamous "kiss on the balcony".  Then there was the fallen horse and rider in the post wedding parade.  Amidst all the carefully planned details these are usually the things that make a day memorable.  And real.   

The happy couple in a public kiss.  The maid on the
right is  delighted, the little one on the left not so much.

Fallen horse and rider in the parade.  No one was hurt but the rider's pride.

Friday, April 29, 2011

William and Kate

Soon to be Prince William and Princess Katherine.  Hmmm.  To get up at 3am to watch the infamous royal wedding or to sleep late on my day off....sleep it is!  I'll catch the highlights later in the day.  Now to put on my big hat and brew some tea for my scones...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Slush and Honking

I watched for 5 or 10 minutes as this pair of geese awkwardly sloshed their way through a slushy ice floe.  When they finally reached the water the lead goose reared his head back, stretched his long neck and honked his triumph to the world.  Well, at least to the disinterested duck ignoring the scene from a nearby chunk of ice.

Saturday, April 23, 2011


The first picture of my first grandchild. 
 Hmm, I wonder if it's a sonogram or a daughterogram...

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Come on over for an icy Margarita

Six inches of snow on April 20th was not really welcome but not all that surprising either...
7am and the snow kept coming all day

Spring in Harbor Springs?
Think sunshine...the forecast is for 70 degrees by next week!
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Monday, April 18, 2011


Mike, Kevin, Mark, Me, late 50's
Dad, pointing out the Badlands
 in South Dakota

I have a strange collection of photos of people pointing.  I think it may have been a sort of tradition for 50's and 60's family vacation trips, people pointing out landmarks for the camera.
Mom, Mary, Kevin, Mike, Mark circa 1958

In the 21st century we still seem to do a lot of pointing and still photograph
 it on a regular basis so here I am celebrating it!
Mary in Colorado apparently calling
 attention to the August snow

Mike points out a unique sign

Linda seems to be pointing toward the Rocky Mountain scenery.
Erik's hand, however is busy on Linda's bum ; )

Friday, April 15, 2011

Only in Canada

My last post, Just Chillin' reminded me of this day (12-28-2009) on Batchawana Bay when Erich and I looked out the window and saw some neighbors floating by on an ice floe - remember, this is Lake Superior!  Of course we agreed they were just plain crazy Canadians.  Then we promptly went out and tried it ourselves!
Neighbors floating with a drink and a rake for steering

Erik got the hang of it...

...then I joined in.

Just Chillin'

A couple of seagulls floating on a little ice floe.
Little Traverse Bay, Petoskey MI

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bear River Recreation Area

I took a walk along the new river walk on the Bear River in Petoskey yesterday.  There are walking paths down on the river, a bike trail up on the bank, bridges, a boardwalk, landscaped stairs up the bank, benches, and a couple of picnic shelters.  It takes about an hour to walk from Sheridan near Clarion to the Mitchell St. Bridge and back.  
Kudos, Petoskey!
Bear River - It'll look great in a few weeks when everything is green!

Boardwalk to the left, from one of the decks

Bear River as it flows under the Mitchell St. Bridge into Lake Michigan
...Or just sit and relax

Places to picnic...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Pocket Friend

We took a walk along the pier Sunday.   I was going to put Erich on top of the lighthouse
 for a picture but I was afraid of dropping him in the icy water so I didn't.

Friday, April 8, 2011


Urbex=Urban Exploration.  I like to think of it as hiking the Urban Wilderness.  Dave, Brian and I went down to the old Packard Plant in Detroit last weekend.  From 1899 to 1958 it was an assembly plant for luxury cars. 
The Packard Plant in its heyday
 Now more than fifty years later it is an ever changing 3.5 million square feet of urban decay, a 40 acre playground for graffiti artists (the now famous Banksy has left his tag), paint ball enthusiasts, photographers, and others with perhaps less honorable intentions.  When we were there on Sunday there was a man by his car just standing there.  Plain clothes security?  Lookout for illegal activities?  We played it safe and stayed outside the buildings.  So here are a few of my favorites; the graffiti pics will be posted later.  
One of the several catwalks bridging parts of the complex

There has been some effort to prohibit easy entry to the
inside but this plywood seems laughable

Packard employees used to use this walkway to cross E. Grand Blvd.
 from one part of the plant to another.  This one is near Concord St.
Notice the Packard Motel on the left - it's still open for business.

Fredrick St. at Bellevue St.  Can you spot TWO "fish out of water"?
 The boat is pretty obvious but note the pheasant crossing the street
 just to the right of it!  As abandoned buildings in the area are razed the

 property becomes grassy fields  allowing the return of wildlife! 
 I love the irony...

No shortage of broken windows for sure

Thousands of people used to work behind those walls

You have to wonder how the graffiti got in some of the seemingly inaccessible places,
 but I'm sure that's what the artists wanted - for us to wonder. 

A padlock and a doorbell?  Really?

Big window openings like gaping mouths drinking in the rain

The barbed wire makes this image reminiscent of a prison watchtower

One can find interest and beauty in almost anything.  Color, texture, history, mystery...

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Long Distance Phone Call

I'm glad communication technology has evolved beyond tin cans and string because I got a phone call from Port Elizabeth, South Africa this afternoon!  Erich was on the shore of the Indian Ocean when he called my cell phone.  Well, it's a good thing I'm in the Detroit area for the weekend , that's 250 miles closer to South Africa...
Port Elizabeth is about 400 miles east of Cape Town, South Africa

Friday, April 1, 2011

Motorcycle Mama

Jim and the Honda Magna 750

Jim took me for an early spring ride outside Big Rapids today.  The last time I rode a motorcycle must have been in my late teens with my brother Kevin. 
 I was terrified then.  Today's ride was different.  It was delightfully breezy, a little bit noisy, and completely exhilarating!