Last week I drove back to Copper Harbor. After 5 weeks of somewhere else, I was eager to return. But I didn't realize how much I missed it until I got back. I'm sure you can relate to this. It may sound cliche, but it's true. Here it goes.
Once I got just south of Houghton, and I crested that hill, I got goosebumps. I felt like I was truly back in the Keweenaw. Coming over the hill into Copper Harbor, though, wow. I saw the sign and the lake, and I cried. Real tears trickled down my face. I didn't even care as long as I could still see the road.
When I pulled into my driveway, I opened my car door, hit the ground on my knees and kissed the rocks and sand. If I would have kissed it the way I really felt, I would have had a mouth full of dirt, and that didn't seem like fun to wash out, so I just kissed it with my lips. When I looked up, I saw my thimbleberry plants bursting with magenta orbs of tang. I ate as many as I could one right after the other until I remembered I had a sleeping baby in the car. He was still sleeping, so I looked out at my little town and took a deep breath.
That's when it hit me.
I felt two feelings at that moment. One was like someone inserted my "missing piece" somewhere in my body and soul. A piece I didn't even realize was gone until it got put back. I felt whole again. The other feeling was like someone plugged me back into life. I didn't realize I was unplugged until the electricity of the air energized me and made me feel alive. Hello, Amanda!!! There you are!!! I missed you!!!
I am not exaggerating this. I bet you believe me.
I know that most people come here and feel like a weight is lifted off their shoulders and peace fills their soul. That is wonderful too. I would feel that way if my life away from here was stressful, but it's not. It's just, well, to be polite, not here.
So there I was. Completely Amanda again. I jumped and cheered and Braeden woke up. I tried celebrating with him, but I don't know if he fully understood my elation. I showed him around the house and checked his reaction. He was more observant than reacting. Pretty typical for him. He takes it all in, that wise little man.
Like at Hunter's Point. He loves to sit in the rocks and chew on them. Here he is picking out a tasty one.
B finding his next chew toy
That boy is tough, I tell you. And just darling.
We've gone quite a few places since we've been home. Great Sand Bay where he took his first dip in Lake Superior and ate his first fist-fulls of sand. Up and down Paul's Plunge. Along the first part of the Keweenaw Point Trail. Lake Manganese and Fanny Hooe. Through Fort Wilkins campground on a busy weekend in August. Atop Brockway Mountain for his first time. Clyde's field. Docks along the harbor shore. Brickside Brewery where the bartenders always give him free beer. Kisses! I mean they give him kisses and hugs.
So here is a picture of the beginning of the Keweenaw Point Trail. I have told you this before, but this trail is destined to loop around the tip of the Keweenaw (hence the name) and Phase I is now complete. It starts on Manganese Road just above the falls and comes out just east of Lake Fanny Hooe by the Mandan Loop near the beginning of Highway 41. Got that?
I was intrigued by the suspended rock at the beginning. Cool, huh?
And here is a part of the seasons that you may not have fully compared in your head. The difference between the bottom of Manganese Falls in the spring and late summer. Can you guess which is which below? Hint: it's the same order I just mentioned.
Can you believe it? It hardly looks like the same spot! But it is. I am not a liar.
The berries are pretty amazing right now. Yeah. What a tease this year. I mean, here I am, actually here with all day to pick, and someone won't sit still in the bushes for hours at a time. I don't blame him, though. When he's ready to pick with me, I'll have him make up for it. Tee hee!
So here is a bit of blatant truth into my life. Raw Amanda. I can't get out to pick berries to make, um, wine, so I just bought rice to make sake! Ha! I will find a way to make wine! I think it will be a nice experiment. I'm all about fermentation experimentation. See also: I like to make and drink wine.
Guess what. It's Art in the Park this weekend in da Harbor! If you're coming up and you don't have a place to sleep, you'll be sleeping in your car. Or on some nice person's beach, I don't know. Sleeping on a pebbly beach is quite wonderful, actually. Even if you don't have a tent. Unless the bugs are out...
So, if you come up this weekend, stop by the bake sale. That's where Braeden and I will be! I'm running it again this year. Bring some baked goods or buy some! If we get to talking and I like you, maybe you can try my wine sometime. See you in September!