Fun news—I got a poem accepted into a small overseas magazine.
They’re not paying me, but that’s okay (just…you know…if any of you are worrying about that and anticipating offering up my work for free in a misguided attempt to undermine “the man”). I’m cool with just getting exposure at this point.
Anyway, the magazine in question is FREE, but is also in paper form, so you would have to write to the editor and ask him to mail you a copy if you want to see it. Anyone interested in that, just comment or message me and I’ll let you know how to get in touch with them.
That aside, I feel like I ought to give an account of my vacation before I completely forget what happened (not that, you know, I’m the sort of person that forgets things…not me).
Chris and I left a bit later than we’d intended, and the trip was pretty uneventful. We arrived around 7ish, with enough time to go to the grocery and clean off a grill so we could cook dinner. We also learned that it is a bad idea to start cooking without first checking to see that all the dishes/servingware/silverware you’ll need are clean. Oops. We also learned that it’s harder to gauge whether chicken is fully cooked when you grill in the semidarkness. Also oops.
Then I had a crushing germophobic episode and was shaking and in tears because the house was full of two years’ worth of dead bugs, and it was too late in the evening to do any serious cleaning. I here make a note that if you make fun of me because I have some obsessive tendencies when it comes to cleanliness…I will hate you. You might think I’m kidding about it, but that’s not the case. I am dead serious and I will think longingly of murdering you with cleaning supplies if you make fun of me.
That’s all for Saturday.
We ate breakfast and then drove to the other side of the lake to go to the Laundromat, where we washed my bedding that had so unfortunately touched dead flies that were caught in a spider web under the edge of the couch I slept on. I had not had a good night.
After that we went home and did some vacuuming and disinfecting and dishwashing and all that kind of thing. Then we went back to town and went for a walk…and I think we went home again and chilled out and watched the television and probably took a walk down our street before we went to get dinner from The Dockside, which I can’t find a good photo of (and I forgot to take one), so this is what it looks like if you are in a plane, I guess 😛
It’s on Torch Lake, which is a very pretty lake, but we didn’t spend any time on it. (It looks like a face!)
We also did some exploring in the garage and found this old tandem bike that I haven’t seen since Katy was my friend and we used to ride it places…but we got it out and went up and down the street a little way before we had to put it back. The tires were pretty leaky and the gears kept jumping unexpectedly, but hopefully we’ll be bringing the bike back home sometime soon so we can use it around here now and then.
There was some old furniture in the garage, too, that belonged to my grandpa…we found old photos of my aunt in highschool, and what I think was a diploma or certification for my grandpa to be an architect…and something that I think belonged to my dad that had a bit of cloth in it that had “been touched to a relic of St. Joseph” (my dad’s family was Catholic). It was pretty interesting stuff, although I didn’t have the presence of mind to take photos of any of it, I guess.
That’s all the stuff I remember from Sunday.
We got up earlyish and hung about the house until around noon when we went out to Traverse City to wander about the mall and buy a jug of water from Target so we could go out to Empire and visit the Sleeping Bear Dunes. We did the dune climb and spent a few hours wandering through sand and scrubby looking plants. I enjoyed it, but Chris was in a terrible mood because he refuses to put on sunscreen BEFORE he gets out and does things…
Then the GPS was flipping out on us when we tried to go home and we hit an incredibly stupid seagull and felt bad about that…it didn’t turn out to be such an awesome day. I do have photos of the dune and some things though, so I’ll try and upload them tomorrow so you can see them. We ended up eating Arby’s in a parking lot between Wendy’s and a resort on the way home.
I don’t remember doing anything special this day (although it was our anniversary…Chris and I have been dating—engaged now—for five years). I think I ended up wandering around and taking photos at the public access location down the street since our beach was taken over by reeds and mint and sweet pea plants. I think Chris spent a lot of the day reading, and I finished the book I’d brought with me, and then part of the second one I had.
We watched the telly and eventually went to cook the steak we’d bought. We were a little worried that it was going to turn out funny because the meat had started turning grey in places, but it turned out fine. Much better than the chicken we’d tried grilling. The baked potatoes didn’t do as well on the grill though, so I guess we’ll have to experiment with that more so we can figure out how long to cook them so they aren’t rock hard. Ah well.
Anyway…Tuesday was a dull day, but it got a LOT more interesting when we tried to go to sleep. Chris was using the room that used to be my room, and I was sleeping on a couch in the loft room that was my parents’ room…and the first two nights went fine, but when I put out the light and tried to go to bed that time, there was this little thunk noise and then a squeaking and fluttering of wings, which are noises that probably don’t make most people immediately think oh no, not again…
Yes. Another bat got into the house.
It just reinforces my notion that the universe wants me to be a goth. I mean, most people get maybe a mouse or maybe a rat in the house, or maybe a raccoon or an opossum in the attic or garage…and yeah, we’ve had a mouse or two…but out of all the possible critters that can get into the house, we usually get the bats.
Anyway, the loft is attached to an unfinished room that must have a gap in it someplace that he got into, and there is a gap between the loft and the unfinished room that he came through to visit me…so we decided that the best thing to do would be to put a light on in the loft and deter him from coming back in the house (I was glad he went back to the unfinished room on his own…we’ve had to chase bats out of the house before and it’s not much fun), and to call my dad in the morning and ask him where in the garage we might find some screening to nail up over the gap. I didn’t end up sleeping in the loft though, in spite of my vampiric aspirations (j/k, j/k…). I mean, bats are cute and I like them, but I didn’t really want to wake up to him whirring around the room if he got it into his little batty head that he wasn’t scared of the light or the ceiling fan after all.
The whole situation was made that much more laughable because this was the graphic on the shirt I was sleeping in:
We decided to go back out to Traverse City that afternoon, and it was kind of okay…but somehow air conditioning was disagreeing with me. By the time we made it to the city, I was more or less immobilized by pain, so we ended up driving around for a bit with the air conditioning off so I could warm up and move again.
Then we went to this place called The Cherry Republic, which iguessthisisforever recommended to me. It was a good place. The products I tried are yummy and if you ever find yourself in the area, I recommend stopping in and getting a cherry soda.
We also popped into a fudge shop and I got us some fudge (it’s a big deal in Michigan, for some reason) and a post card to send to Arcis.
It was super crowded in the shop area because of the film festival going on, but we managed to get out of there and then drove to the marina where the zoo used to be. It was kind of sad to not see the zoo there anymore, but we were treated to an ill mannered seagull who decided to plunk down in front of us and eat crawdads and get little crawdad bits all over the sidewalk where we were going to walk.
Then we went to the bookstore and picked up some new reading material, and went and got dinner from Outback. And went home. I am still stumped by my reaction to the air conditioning on the way there, because it didn’t really bother me in the little shops or in the bookstore or the restaurant after I warmed up again that first time…I don’t know what my deal is.
We spent a lot of this day hanging around the house and reading or watching the telly again. I went for a few walks and phoned a few of the local marinas to see if anyone would rent us a boat for that afternoon. Nobody had one for that afternoon, but the third place I talked to had a fishing boat they said I could reserve for Friday, so I did that and then we decided to have me go out and practice some driving. I didn’t do too bad, but I definitely need to practice making smoother turns and find some way to get more comfortable going at faster speeds. I should’ve been driving at 55, but I couldn’t bring myself to do it and we ended up going at about 45 and other drivers wanted to murder me, I’m sure : /
Then I brought us home and Chris drove us around the lake to town and we got some iced cream. We cooked the rest of our chicken that night, but used a pan instead of the grill. It turned out much better (although I think I need to find a way to prevent Chris from adding garlic to things at every opportunity).
We got up and ended up eating lunch instead of breakfast, then hurried out to the marina to pick up our rental boat. We went down the river to Lake Bellaire and kind of drifted around and took photos and chatted. It was a nice time, although I did get a little sunburn on my shoulders and the back of my neck. It didn’t hurt then, but it does now that it’s peeling off…
Anyway, we took the boat back after a few hours, and then went home where Chris fell asleep while I was reading. I was starting to fall asleep, too, but I decided to get up and go for a walk instead. It was an interesting walk, since I was chased by a dog that was too timid to actually bark or growl at me, and ended up just making this awkward mumbling noise while she ran up and jammed her nose into my hand and then ran away again. Very weird dog.
We got a pizza from this little place run by an Italian family (although the grandpa with the accent wasn’t there when we picked it up) and picked up some marshmallows and things to make s’mores from the grocery. When we got home, we made a fire in the little pit in the yard and toasted some marshmallows. Then we packed up some things and had a disagreement and watched some television before going to sleep.
Saturday was pretty uneventful. We came home and on the way stopped at Cabela’s and Bronner’s Christmas store. It was nice to look around at things, but I definitely think I’m harder to impress than I was when I was younger.
…and that’s what I did on vacation.