austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

Knock on my windows, link up the chains

It should not surprise you to know that Wednesday started slow and late with a late-morning rising and a lot of time eating breakfast gradually and watching Columbo investigate the porch and the lawn. He was starting to appreciate the lawn's offer of things to eat, and I think it's done good things for him. He's been a bit more open-minded about eating things since then; at least, he's taken less time to try out novelties and has even done stuff like sniff into bunny_hugger's coffee cup. He wouldn't take any coffee, but he was much more open to the possibility than he had been before the trip north.

We went back to Sutton's Bay for the day. We had a good several hours on the beach the day before, but we hadn't really been in town, poking around the shops or anything like that. The most photogenic and spectacular of the places is I don't know the name of. But it's the garden shop with so many statues outside, including a row of stones carved into owls all staring ... out ... at people walking up to the place. And glass beads and a little artificial river with waterfalls and goldfish of the kind we'd have if we made a fortune and put it into expanding our yard. It's no less packed inside, although I have fewer photographs of that because I noticed the sign asking people not to take pictures. Which is disappointing because their wall of clocks alone deserves Internet immortalization. Some are simple cuckoo clocks; some are complicated clocks. Lighthouses, mermaids, bunnies, owls, everything you can imagine in there somewhere. Figures too, elaborate carved sculptures to match one we'd gotten a couple years ago, that of a piece of wood carved to look like a rabbit and painted as a carrot. Imagine a line of these, animal-food items. And now you know just what the shop is like.

We visited a number of other stores, mostly poking in, sometimes picking up a thing or two. Among the curiosities were a couple of fairy doors (not just an Ann Arbor thing anymore, apparently), and a shop with a book honoring Traverse Colantha Walker. She was a milk cow, serving the Northern Michigan Asylum near Traverse City. Over her lifetime she produced something like 200,114 pounds of milk and 7,525 pounds of butterfat and, apparently, she's buried somewhere on the grounds of the former asylum. She was, it transpires, a championship cow of the kind that that doesn't happen anymore, now that milk production has become big and bloodthirsty business.

The science/nature store and the educational toys and games store attached to it were a must-visit again. In the games shop was a guy who let's just go ahead and call ``Gamer Me'' enthusiastic about the way we were looking over the boxes of big board games and kits and happy to talk them up to us. Over in the science store the astronomy guy, a former professor at The Local College, was passing out --- once again --- his information sheets about what was in the sky and was delighted that bunny_hugger referred to the Big Dipper as an asterism rather than a constellation. They've had that conversation too, in the context of his showing off charts that depict how the Chippewa divided the sky. (I think they also have a warrior figure based around Orion, a neat point of coincidence.) He was also, I believe, once more delighted that we wouldn't speak of the ``dark side'' of the Moon.

We jested about whether the Science Guy and the Gamer Me Guy got along. My joke: they can't stand each other, because they're too similar personality types. There's not the slightest reason to believe that's true, but it's convenient to.

We got some ice cream and went to the water wheel park to eat it. That's the park just west of the main drag of town with exactly what it sounds like in it, a small, decorative water wheel at the end of a creek. It's also the park with that weird public art sculpture that looks like a blocky, UPA-cartoon robot. It's the creek where, on our 2013 visit, we saw a fish in the creek. Our question then, as now: how did a fish get into this tiny creek a couple inches wide? I started to follow the creek, looking for its source.

Well, it went up to the edge of the park, there to disappear into a corrugated-steel pipe. Taking my best guess to the pipe's direction I kept walking across the street and eventually found where it came from, a gulley running parallel to the street and underneath some people's driveways. It eventually broadened out into a long, skinny pool by the side of another T-intersection in the street that couldn't be the source. Following the faint trace of water motion I went across the street again, and found a short stream and the vast, slightly waving movement of a pond covered in forested plantlife. If that's not the source of the creek it's at least a major resting spot for it.

And what is this creek that winds through the Water Wheel Park? As best we can determine, it hasn't got one. Not even ``Water Wheel Park Creek'' or something. This seems like a geographic anomaly.

I think this was the day we stopped on the way back at the Hansen's supermarket to pick up supplies and dinner. It was the one the homeowner recommended as the place to pick up everything we might need. They had a complementary coffee bar, nothing like what they have at the Horrock's in Lansing; I learned later that bunny_hugger passed on it because she didn't notice the thermoses there.

We again played Mice and Mystics and I think we won at least one chapter handily, beating it in record time, to bunny_hugger's brother's delight. He was really getting into playing the mouse-archer Lily, and building a slightly epic story of how she was coming around to be the arch-hero of our little party. It's a shame that most of the Mice and Mystics chapters are explicitly four-character games, and also a shame that we'd only have these intermittent chances to play with him.

Trivia: By 1740 the typical English East India Company ship would be 490 tons. Were the ship 500 tons or more in capacity it would have had to include a chaplain. Source: The Honourable Company: A History of the English East India Company, John Keay.

Currently Reading: The Greek War of Independence: Its Historical Setting, C M Woodhouse. So it opens with ``One of the by-products of a good secondary education in England is the delusion that Greek history comes to a full stop at about the death of Alexander the Great.'' Good start!

PS: some last wandering around Cedar Point's Halloweekends last year.


Butterfly-woman detail on Cedar Point's Midway Carousel. The Daniel Muller Butterfly Lady at the Merry-Go-Round Museum is a replica of this, or at least one of its partners around the carousel.


Mean Streak's headstone at the rides graveyard. Mean Streak had an overblown reputation for being a rough ride. Cedar Point regulars don't know what a truly rough ride is.


Front gate of Cedar Point, after the park had closed, with the October cloudscape above it. How many people are taking pictures of the park's entrance gate, and how many are taking selfies of themselves outside the gate? Answer: all of them. Not depicted: the Tyrannosaurus Rex statue with sunglasses on, which is a shame.

PPS: Reading the Comics, October 14, 2017: Physics Equations Edition, some more comic strips with mathematics stuff.

Tags: cedar point, halloweekends, traverse bay 2017

Posts from This Journal “traverse bay 2017” Tag

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.