|Travelogue -- Dr Bob's Northwest Territory Motorcycle Ride|
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27 May 2015, 11:59 PM, Gaylord, MI
Welcome back. I rode 262.2 miles today. Most, unfortunately, on Interstates. You should note that I use the word Interstate for any limited access roadway. Sometimes what I call an Interstate is really a US highway, but with limited access. Anyway, I started the day on non-Interstate roads, but gave that up for two reasons.
Reason one, I found the roads just too rough. Michigan needs to fix their roads. It was ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ka-bump, ad nauseum. I thought I was in a Johnny Jump-Up, something I had for my children about 45 years ago.
Reason two, there were thunderstorms about. In fact, there was a severe thunderstorm warning just south of Lansing, the capitol of Michigan.
That big black dot with the surrounding circle in the middle is me. It was time to get out of Dodge.
I was about half-way between Flint and Lansing when I first looked at weather radar. Combining reason one and reason two, I decided to abandon non-Interstate travel and get to Lansing before that storm hit. It was moving toward Lansing. One storm had already passed through Lansing. I had some spritzing on my windshield on the way.
Wait a minute, I am getting ahead of myself. Let me go back to an earlier time, a couple or so hours earlier. I told my first cousin once removed Jerry, who made a fantastic pancake breakfast served with his personally made maple syrup (that means tapping the tree, boiling down the sap, etc.) that I wanted to go past a house that was very close to his, one that had significance to me. Back a number of years ago, about 60 of them, I was in this house.
My grandmother lived in this house (in Flint, Michigan). My family was visiting from Indiana. Everybody had gone out shopping, or doing something out of the house, leaving only my father and me in the house. My father was ill. While everybody else was gone, my father became increasingly ill. He told me to call an ambulance. I wasn't sure just how to do that, so I went to a house down the road and asked them to call an ambulance. Dad was taken to the hospital and spent several days there, I don't remember how long, perhaps my older sister remembers. I remember going to the hospital and looking up at the window where he was and waving to him. We children were not allowed to visit in his room. This is a picture of the hospital from about 1955, Dad's room was one of those windows up there.
But back to today. Here's Ruth and Jerry. Thanks to them I had a very good evening last night, a good night's sleep, and a fantastic breakfast this morning.
As you have already read, I was on my way to Lansing. Lansing the is the capitol of Michigan. That means I have to take a picture. Here it is.
I was quite disappointed to see all that scafolding on the dome. That's two capitols now that have had scafolding when I visited, Maine last year and Michigan now. Both states start with the letter "M". You think that has anything to do with it?
After getting out of Lansing quickly, I headed to Gaylord. Along the way I spotted this windmill farm.
In Gaylord I wanted to visit another relative, my first cousin Genia. As I said last night, a number of my relatives left southeastern Kentucky for the Detroit area, Genia is the daughter of one of those migrants.
Here's Genia and husband Lynn checking out my bike.
The three of us headed out for dinner, but first we had to check on Clyde (black) and Skylar (blue merle), their collies. Beautiful dogs. Made me miss my Maggie.
After a long and delightful dinner, Genia and Lynn took me back to my motel, where I carefully prepared this page, and then fell asleep.