A Quick Kayak

Something about the weather this summer has just not been inspiring for kayak trips. We’ve talked a few times about going out, but changed our minds for various reasons. The other morning after I dropped Petey off for puppy day camp (What? Who’s spoiled?), I stopped by the beach in Elk Rapids. It was early enough in the morning that the water was still, and the beach was entirely empty. I really wished I didn’t have to return home for work, but I did. At least I had my few peaceful moments on the sand before my work day began.


The morning remained calm long after I arrived home. And as we finished lunch, the sun was shining, and things still looked entirely pleasant out. I checked the forecast, and the weather report indicated wind speeds at a max of 5MPH – not too shabby. So before we picked Petey up, we decided to squeeze in an hour on the lake.

kayaking Elk Rapids-7

I’m not sure about the whole 5MPH thing. The air didn’t seem particularly breezy, but the lake surface was quite choppy (I walked away with a very wet lap), and the current on the south side of the beach pulled strongly at the tails of our boats.

But for no longer than we were out, the paddle was exceptionally rejuvenating. I don’t know why time spent quietly on or near the water is so restorative, but it is. I feel so at peace and so connected to the water when we kayak. We should really get out more often.

Holy Cow, It’s July

We are halfway through 2013 – can you believe it? It seems like just yesterday I was whingeing about how it would never.warm.up and now tomorrow (perhaps today, depending on where/when you’re reading this) it’s July.

Since it was the last day of June, we got a late start. Okay, so we really got a late start because we never get up early and yesterday’s moving shenanigans took their toll on us. After tending to our trees and garden, we slowly prepared to meet the rest of the world, and ventured forth.

This guy just would not sit still for me

We didn’t know where we’d end up, but we decided our route would take us through Elk Rapids because we hadn’t been there in a while. Since I posted so many shots of the cherry trees in bloom, it only seemed fitting that I stop and check their progress.

They are loaded with fruit that’s not yet ripe

Elk Rapids was as lovely as ever. It’s such a quaint village and the beach there is one of my favorites in the area. We had planned on kayaking there today, but as you can see, it was a tad too windy.

Trying to avoid traffic from the Cherry Festival in Traverse City, we meandered north toward Charlevoix. We checked out some old favorite places that we hadn’t visited in a few seasons, and found a couple of new-to-us beaches, and generally enjoyed the countryside.

Eventually we found ourselves in Charlevoix – a coastal town that we’ve driven through dozens of times, but never really stopped. We’ve hit a couple places on the south side, and we’ve ridden the bike trail heading north, but we’ve always tried to get through the town as quickly as possible – not because it looked unpleasant, but because there’s one road that goes through town and it’s always, always busy.

But today we stopped. And we ate at a tasty Asian Fusion restaurant. And we walked out to the lighthouse and beach area. And then we walked under the drawbridge over to the marina where I was absolutely astonished. The marina – which holds a jaw-dropping collection of gargantuan yachts – was surrounded by an inviting park with a splash pad and an outdoor amphitheater. For a town that I (yes, judgmentally) thought was snooty, Charlevoix is pretty welcoming. Maybe we’ll make it back a time or two in the next half of the year 😉

Just Another Lesson Learned

Last night we rang in the new year in what is becoming a traditional way of celebrating, but in a way that was decidedly not revelrous. Jim and Jess joined us for some healthy southwest quinoa chili, we chatted about everything and nothing until it was time for their wee one to hit the hay, and then we watched The Exorcist…after which I promptly went to bed. Take it easy on me, okay? I’m still recovering from the flu. Continue reading