The drive to Maumee Bay State Park from Van Buren was almost a direct northerly route. The Van Buren State Park manager had told us that he'd driven the road "too many times to count" as recently as the past week and gave us very simple directions which we followed to the letter. We were looking forward to getting back to being near water and as soon as we found our site and set up, Don set off to explore on his bike. Later on he convinced me to take a ride and I, in my quest to put my feet in all 5 Great Lakes (I'd been in Superior in 1981 and Ontario in 2009,) began to question it when I saw Lake Erie. There is a swimming area at the park but it did not look really tempting but that may have been the presence of smokestacks across the lake and a few UFOs (unidentified floating objects) in the water. But I soldiered on and was brave and walked into the lake. I have neither died nor suffered from any type of pollutionitis which I DID get swimming in CT in 1970 so all is good.
Don had not gone to the nature preserve the day before so we rode over there and found that it was closed.Our plans were to spend some time in Toledo, both for "city time" as well as because some of his family had moved there from Findlay and his uncle had written about it during a visit to them when he was 10 (1930.) However, first we wanted to explore more of the park. The weather was beautiful and we were more and more finding how lucky we'd been with the weather since we set out 4 months before. While the Atlantic states were sweltering in June, we were in ME with blissful temperatures. The only hot days we'd encountered had been back in Ulster Park and we'd dealt with them by getting some pool time each afternoon. So, late morning on the second day we rode over to the nature center to find the visitor center closed for lunch. We decided to do the walk through and then come back to visit. OK, I tend to judge how pretty and/or interesting I find a place by how often I find myself lifting my camera for a photo. I might as well have installed a head mount in the preserve. There were mushrooms, and frogs, and birds and flowers and a seldom sighted turtle and oh yes, dragonflies. And there were areas of intense vegetation that provided shade and the calls of all sorts of different birds and then huge open areas of marshlands and all were replete with wildlife. We didn't get to see a fox, since it was day time, but one had left some scat on the boardwalk. We took several hours with Phoenix trooping happily along and then toured the visitor center upon our return.
|A Blanding Turtle-a rare sighting|
|I told him to smile for the camera-I can't see if he did but he looked right at it|
|I asked this one to stay in place so I could grab a pic-and he did|
|Fun in the mud|
|Do you see the frog?|
Well, that nice weather we'd been having changed and the next day was rainy and cloudy but we drove into town for our haircuts. Mistake. Since getting on the road I have become re-enamored with Supercuts where I can get a quick (15-20 minute) haircut for $14 (old fart rate.) I had not had a bad one yet and though this place was not Supercuts it was built on the same business model. Perhaps it was the fact that my cutter was young, pregnant for the first time, tired and shall I say, grumpy, but my instructions to start with 1/2 to 3/4 inch and then I'd see if I wanted more off were quite literally ignored and she lopped off a good inch with the first cut. From there it was all downhill and I sat that remembering that hair grows back and that we all have bad days. Her mood improved as I chatted away and she admitted how knackered she is all the time but I was sorely tempted to complain. Then I figured that leaving a very small tip would say what I wanted to say and not risk her losing a job she could ill afford to lose. However, Don was also disappointed with his cut and has not (as of the end of December as I write this, had another.) Both of us had VERY short hair and that combined with the weather made us decide that we really didn't want to go into town after all and would rather simply go back and relax. That means clean and fiddle with the MoHo too, so that is what we did.
We thought maybe we'd stop on the way through the next day on our way to MI...
|Cadbury dreaming of being a hunter|
|What I suspect he thinks he'd hunt...if he could|
|This guy visited every morning|
|On the way to town|