Friday, August 26, 2011

Foliage Report

I wanted to update you on how the wild things are growing.

As for the berries: bils, thimbles, blues, straws and service are pretty much on their downward slope.  I'm lucky to grab a couple of any of these varieties during an outdoor galavant.  Raspberries are still pretty good.  Blackberries and choke cherries are coming up, however, and I need to find time to harvest them. Mmmm, blackberries.

The aster is even already out!  The mint patches are flowering.  Those always seem like the last flowers to give it a go before the green color fades.  It's amazing to me every year when leaves start to turn brown and yellow.  It's as if I forgot that happens until I see it again.  The decline of the foliage brings the decline of the busy season -- after Labor Day weekend, of course.

I've already seen some red maple leaves.  Those always bring up the last batch of our tourists to gawk.  It's also a little slower pace of life before the dead drop off.  Once those leaves fall, so does business.  

But new life always springs from what is deceased: the locals!  Time for ourselves is right around the corner.  It's crazy to see what we've accomplished so far this summer.  I would say it's been a good one, but I get mixed reviews, depending who I ask.

I don't know if I can even explain to you the relief and relaxation that naturally takes over my mind, body and spirit when the earth lets the cool weather take over.  But at the same time, I feel like a bird flying free from its cage.  Soon I can work on Amanda!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Checking In

Oh, geez, it's been over a week since I talked to you!  Time is really flying by, and I barely get the chance to sit at the computer.  But that's okay; it's not my favorite place to sit anyway.  I'd rather be in the sunshine!

The annual Art in the Park is this weekend, so town is, once again, crawling with people: vendors, artists, families and so on.  Don't worry, I've been handling them pretty well these days.  Whew!

I'm sorry, but I don't really have much else to say right now!  I could, but I fear it won't be very interesting. All is well, though, in da Harbor.  

Saturday, August 13, 2011

It's Not Just Me

Okay, so maybe I'm the only one that will think this little story is cute, but I want to share it anyway: 

Yesterday I went for a roller blade.  On my way out the door, I saw a girl running in a pink shirt.  Cute!  And I'm wearing a pink tank top!  As I rolled down the pavement toward the beginning of U.S. Highway 41, I noticed another runner -- wearing a pink shirt!  Cool!  Everyone out on the road is wearing pink!

My  roller blade was quite wonderful.  I spun back down the hill in front of the General Store and my trail runner friend popped out of the trail head wearing -- you guessed it -- pink tank top!  Oh, the glory of pink.  It has power in numbers.

And just so you don't think I'm the only person affected by summer up here, let me tell you of another realization.  Yesterday I started collecting door prizes for the Fat Tire Festival.  As I went around talking to various business owners, I got the same daze-eyed look from many of them with the arm flail and comment, "It's August."  

I know!  So it's not just me who gets thrown into a hardly-a-moment-for-myself-I-can't-believe-all-the-people-around-I-can't-wait-for-October tizzy.  Why?  Because it's August.  That's all I can really say.  But hey, at least we're busy!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Buzz in Town

I haven't lived right in Copper Harbor itself for four years.  I was two miles outside the hulabaloo -- unable to hear a thing.  Now I live across from the general store, which gets more in-and-out traffic than any other place in town.  Car doors are constantly slamming.

For the last few years, I wouldn't even know it was the Fourth of July until I pedaled into town for work.  This year the parade went by my house, and people parked in my parking lot.  I used to be in the dark about the fact that all the Harley riders were up for Thunder in the Harbor until my Bud Light sales were up at the Harbor Haus.  This year their engines scared my puppy into the closet.  I wouldn't even know the Copperman Triathlon was going on unless I volunteered at it.  This year the bike event went right past my house.

Do you see what I'm getting at?  I'm in all the action!  I live at Grand Central Station!  Thank goodness my front porch is elevated and back from the road.  I can sit up there and watch it all without everyone watching me!  It's really a cool spot.  And if I want to try to forget about it all, I can sit on the back porch with the thimbleberries, maples and ferns.  Truly a peaceful retreat.

So that's a nutshell of my new perspective for you.  I actually really love it, and I am relieved with the fact that I don't ever have to drive a vehicle unless I'm leaving da Harbor all together.  And since I don't live half a mile down a gravel road, I've retaken up roller blading -- a favorite past time of mine.

But that's not all that's going on in da town.  On my roller blade today, I was reminded of all the construction projects happening.  Construction projects in Copper Harbor, oh yay!  That means things are happening!  Here is a list of the few that I can remember:

An addition to the Shepard of the Sea Chapel
A new residence for a local couple
An 18 hole mini golf course called "Into the Woods"
A six foot wide trail from the Marina to town
And a microbrewery

Pretty cool, hey?  Let's keep this town alive, so I can live here forever!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Northern Lights

I thought I was dreaming when I awoke at 2:00 in the morning to the phone ringing.  Oh, great, I thought.  Do I really want to answer a two-in-the-morning call?

"You have to go outside right now," my friend said.

"What's out there?"

"The northern lights are like I have never seen them before.  I'm up on Brockway.  You have to go outside."

"Okay, I'll check."  Click.

So Aaron and I put on some shoes and walked down to the Harbor Haus dock to see the show.  It was a good one: mostly green and white, but all the way across the horizon, and all the way up above our heads.  I have never seen them fill the sky like that before.  I wished I could be looking in all places at once!

They did the shooting up motion like towers, the spreading across the sky and (one I've never gotten to see) the shimmer.  Oh, the shimmer is cool.  It's honestly like a disco -- so scattered and blinking in all different places.  The show had its peaks and its lulls.  All in all, a very worth while show to get me out of bed.  We were out for probably 20 minutes before it died down.

Another great part about sitting under da Keweenaw sky is the stars.  They were twinkling bright where the clouds didn't cover.  We both saw a few shooting stars.  Do you know what the best part of seeing the shooting stars is for me?  The fact of knowing that I don't need to make a wish.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

A Berry Update

Happy August!

Oy, I can tell it's August by the amount of people and heat.  Not complaining, just saying.

There are a few people, however, that make me excited to see.  A handful of times this summer, my blog readers have come into the Harbor Haus for dinner or what not, and introduced themselves to me as some one who reads my blog.  Thank you!  I appreciate knowing that you are out there enjoying my adventures and musings.  I try my best to keep you entertained and informed.  Just you wait til I get more creative energy stored up!

Now for a berry update.  If you were with me last summer, you'll remember that berries of all kinds were huge and plentiful.  This year, that is not the case.  

The bilberry bushes are quite empty.  I scouted my four best spots, all to find that I am walking more than picking.  I mean, I've got almost two gallons already, but it took a lot of searching and time.  They are my favorite because they are tasty and they freeze well.

The thimbleberries, however, are rocking.  I'll be out tomorrow picking their little magenta buttons with Aaron's family.  So pumped.

The blueberries seem a little late, but they're out there.  Delicious too.  

Cherries are doing well.  I just need to find a ladder to reach them all.  There are some nice trees on my way to work at the HH, but I try not to eat too many because my mouth gets all purple like I've been drinking merlot.  Ha!

Sugar plums are a little late too, and not as juicy as last year, but I have a feeling I'm going to pick a bunch again for wine.  Mmm.

Buffaloberries were more than I've ever seen, but I didn't pick any this year because they are so tart, and I really don't know what to do with them.  They are mostly gone already -- maybe the birds ate them all!

I haven't checked out the chokecherries, raspberries or plums too much to see how they are doing yet.  What?  I'll find out soon enough.

Thanks for reading, and if you see me behind the bar at the Harbor Haus, say hello, and remind me to autograph a CH pamphlet for you!