Our first mistake was leaving Traverse City. We had wanted dinner, and the hipster bar didn't have appealing enough vegetarian options. But somehow we failed to think that we'd have a better chance finding dinner in town than in the smaller towns leading to Omena, or in the nearly vacant areas between towns.
We had defensible reasons, though. The owner of the house we rented left tips on good stuff in the area, including a moderately upscale grocery he recommended. We figured we could get dinner, or the parts of a good dinner, there and take it to a beach to eat over sunset. By the time we got there they were closed and we realized, oh yeah, tiny towns in far northern lower-peninsula Michigan might not be open to crazy late hours like 9 pm. I got worried when we tried the Subway also in that strip mall and found it had just closed.
The best I could offer: if we went to the Tom's supermarket in Northport, which would be about a half-hour off, we could get something there and eat on the shoreline in town. It wouldn't be the ideal of a picnic dinner on the beach in Omena or so, but it'd be something, and we accepted that. They didn't have pre-made sandwiches, or other really good-for-eating-without-ovens stuff. We got some potato salad, some hummus and chips, that sort of thing. And we found a gazebo on the waterfront, facing east as the sun set. Even the insects were well-behaved, from our perspective.
And there was a delight, too. A frog made his way onto the sidewalk/street near us. He went about his business, existing and making insects exist differently, and not minding as we watched him being. After he had his fill and moved on we spotted another frog doing much the same. They apparently understand what street lights can do for them in concentrating insects.
It wasn't the dinner by sunset on the beach we might've hoped for, but it was a pretty good one anyway. And we drove back to the rented house. There, our pet rabbit was out in the yard, under bunny_hugger's mother's watchful eye. bunny_hugger's father came over as we pulled up, and before he got to us I quipped, ``they made their flight''.
Well, of course I was right. Isn't that how the world works? They'd be getting in sometime around midnight but now instead of spending the evening finding out what bunny_hugger's parents were up to or maybe playing more Mice and Mystics we'd have to drive the half-hour plus back to Traverse City and pick them up at the airport.
I laughed. It's what I do when faced with the frustrating absurd. bunny_hugger did not. She wasn't soothed by the confusing explanation of how her brother went from absolutely positively without question not being able to make it to Traverse City on Tuesday to ``will need a pickup in two hours''.
I drove, giving bunny_hugger her major break from adding miles to her car. We had to refill the gas, and it started raining because apparently the weather wasn't afraid of the pathetic fallacy. bunny_hugger was also offended that the airport there is named Cherry Capital Airport. It's lèse-majesté against Lansing's airport.
But her brother and his girlfriend were there, ready for us, and the rain settled to a little enough drizzle we could load them up without getting soaked. We briefed them on what the house was like and what all had been going on, and they explained their flights without my getting straight just what had happened.
We got them home and set up and not too ridiculously far past midnight considering.
Trivia: In September 1777 the Pennsylvania State Assembly authorized George Washington to seize whatever clothing and supplies in the southeastern region of the state were necessary. He refused to use this power. Source: The First American Army: The Untold Story of George Washington and the Men Behind America's First Fight for Freedom, Brue Chadwick.
Currently Reading: American Monsters: A History of Monster Lore, Legends, and Sightings In America, Linda S Godfrey. ``Winnebozho, or Bozho as modern Madisonians like to call him, was something quite different. Part human, part fish, and part sacred raccoon, Bozho was highly respected by the Ho-Chunk [ Native Americans, of present-day Wisconsin ] ... A 1917 report claimed that Bozho had large round, glowing or fiery eyes, and in another encounter that same year, perhaps the strangest lake creature incident ever, a great beast slithered up and licked the soles of the feet of a student sunbathing on her stomach next to the water. The monster seemed more playful than vicious, as its main mischief consisted of pranks such as overturning the occasional canoe or popping its head up harmlessly'' ... I have a new culture-hero!
PS: Reading the Comics, September 10, 2016: Finishing The First Week Of School Edition, with a surprising load of talk about some ordinary comics. I must've been saving it up.