Ahh, Western Michigan. My yearly escape from the pavement, smog and traffic of suburbia. Here I find relief in sparkling lakes, sandy beaches, deep green forests, and spectacular sunsets – with nary a traffic jam in sight.
The area near the coast is a hot bed of fruit production, thanks to Lake Michigan’s warming influence and a longer growing season. Fruits grown include peaches, pears and plums, apples and apricots. But what Mason County is famous for is its tart cherries. Wonderful, dark, juicy cherries.
Guilty confession: this is a stock photo, not one of mine. There sat a bowl of beautiful cherries in Betsey’s kitchen, and it never occurred to me to take a photo. Stupid me – I ate them instead.
On a corner in the middle of nowhere, a country store. Well, to a suburban girl like me it seems like the middle of nowhere. No doubt the locals consider it a congested intersection. In fact, you can find it on Google Maps – at the corner of West Nurnberg and North Quarterline Roads. Reckon that’s progress for you.
Mennonite girl working in a roadside field. Farming is a way of life for the sizable population of Mennonites and Amish in Michigan, as it is for communities in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and other locales.
The dirt and gravel roads I traveled on in Michigan had me wishing for my trusty Forester SUV instead of a rental sedan. I wouldn’t have tried the road at bottom left even if it wasn’t a private road.
Coming up: Sleeping Bear Dunes