I should have driven home on day 4; I was planning to go straight home after my two nights at Taquanamon Falls. I was out of food. The tent was wet. The holiday weekend, when campgrounds fill up and traffic gets crazy, was right around the corner.
But I was having too much fun.
So I searched for a State Forest campground to spend one more night, a campground that was sort of on the way. And I found one, situated along the Munuscong River near Pickford Michigan, still in the Upper Peninsula. After all the rain we’d had the river was wide and muddy.
There were several families settled into spots along the river. The mosquitoes were in residence there too, so I chose a large grassy site, further away from the river, which enjoyed a stiff breeze. In fact I didn’t slide my $13.00 payment into the secured payment pipe until I got the tent up because I wasn’t sure I’d be able to do that with the considerable wind. But it went up easily. I think it was glad for the opportunity to dry out.
I was glad myself. Everything got hung up and aired out. The site was huge and covered in grass. No mud. Towering pine trees. Perfect.
Even better, I was only two miles from an old barn. A photogenic old barn. So after camp was set up, on my way into town to find food, I stopped. Of course.
And the next day on my way home I lollygagged. Turns out there’s a lot of farm country between the Upper Peninsula and home. Lots of great barns. And that day there was a stunning sky filled with puffy white clouds that begged me to stop and attempt a capture.
So I did. In fact I stopped several times. Seems every exit I took there was something beautiful to enjoy.
Barns. Barns everywhere. Long, straight country roads crossing flat country with farms tucked in behind nearly every stand of trees.
Along one country road I met a couple of friends. They had come out of the woods and were walking down a lane.
They were not that excited to see me. After a long stare they turned and bounded back toward the woods.
Soon they were almost hidden from view.
They made me smile.
But…back to barns.
There were so many pretty places to stop.
I could have stayed out there all day. Wait. I did. What a gift retirement is! Time to play along the way home. Time to enjoy a beautiful sky and ripening wheat fields, meadows of wildflowers, soaring birds, bounding deer.
And so ends this adventure. The camping gear is packed away. Katie the dog has forgiven me for leaving her behind. Husband has listened to the stories. The laundry is done, gardens weeded, groceries purchased, meals cooked. I’m going to visit Aunt V this afternoon.
Life has settled back into the familiar pattern. Adventures are, after all, only adventures if they are occasional. Sporadic.