Grace and I have been back for a few days now. I’ve got the pics up, but don’t have any posts yet. So, many of you know G and I took a four-day road trip on the bike. I’ll bet your wondering how it went. Well, surprisingly for you but not for me, it was AWESOME! Here are a few highlights:
We headed out for Ludington State Park. With the bike packed down with all of our stuff, we rode well. Stopped in Nashville, MI for lunch, Grand Rapids for a rest and massage in a really lame mall, and a major stop at Rosy Mound Park. This park contained letterboxes, which we had determined ahead of time would be one of our hobbies on the trip.
We spent about three hours in that park looking for 8 letterboxes. We found one. Only one. After much hiking. With jeans and boots. Was it fun? Absolutely. As a matter of fact, this picture was taken on the beach at Lake Michigan after we found our letterbox. It was a great momet. And probably one of my fav pics of all time. Because we spent so much time in the park, we were fighting sunlight for our arrival. We stopped at Ray’s in Grand Haven for dinner. Fish and chips and shrimp and chips. At a diner. Ate outisde and talked to a man named Clair. He was from PA but moved here to work most of his life. Lost his wife recently. Fought in the Korean War. Seemed lonely. So we shared a picnic table with him and enjoyed our meal.
As the sun went down, so did the temperature. We white-knuckled it from Grand Haven to Ludington on the highway going 70. By the time we got there, we were frozen solid. We stopped at a Big Boy for hot chocolate, coffee, and hot deserts. Then found the park, our camping cabin, and a less than stellar night sleep. But we were thankful that it had a heater. Nice!
We decided to look for letterboxes on Tuesday. Since we were on the bike, we showered, then didn’t have anything to eat. Went to the camp store, bought some cinnamon rolls and juice, and ate at a picnic table. Simple, baby. Simple. Then off to hiking all day. We found 0 (ZERO) letterboxes. But we probably hiked about 8 miles. On our adventure, we went on a one-hour canoe ride (G’s first) and decided to head into town for dinner. A nice sit down place.
We found a local place. It was nice. I had chicken stuffing, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce. G had a BLT and it looked awesome. There we called Kopickos and confirmed the surprise: Wednesday night we were going to spend with Mr. Ron and Becky! Later that night we stocked up on supplies at Wal Mart, got a fan and some gloves for G (she had lost one of hers on our trip), and realized we were tired, but not ready to head back. So we found an ice cream place, then headed to the 9:45 showing of Kung Fu Panda. Grace loves telling the fact that we went so late.
When we got back to the camp site, it was after 12. But some of our conversations that day about God, being a Christian, and even tithing caused me to pause. I took her to the beach. Millions of stars out. Gentle breeze. And we layed on the beach and talked. About lots of stuff. But mostly about the fact that the same God who created millions of stars, planets and even solar systems, intentionally created her and is interested in her. We also talked about the fact that when we hold on too tight to our stuff, we wind up losing it. Try holding on to sand. It was a great moment. We went to bed REALLY late. But we had a fan.
We woke up at noon. That’s right. Noon. And had to be out by 1. So we ate our pop tarts and energy drinks, got the bike loaded back up, and decided not to search for letterboxes. Got a present for Mick at the store and headed north to Orchard Beach State Park. Easy ride up. And then it was Kopicko time!
Ron and Becky welcomed us and we immediately went down to the beach. Becky and Grace went for a walk on the beach finding cool stones. Ron and I took a nap in the shadow of his mammoth umbrella. We went back, played Dogopoly, and enjoyed a great bonfire. Brats, dogs, mountain pies, and marshmellows. After eating and sharing it was time to head to bed in their high-end camper. Ron had asked Grace what she wanted for breakfast. She said chocolate chip pancakes.
Before we all got up, Ron got up. Drove into town, bought stuff for chocolate chip pancakes, and he and Becky made us a breakfast of champions. After we ate, we packed up and headed home. On our way home, we stopped in Grand Rapids to pick up a thank you gift for the Kopickos. We also stopped in Charlotte for dinner. And before we knew it, we were back home around 9ish.
There are many side stories and things we’d love to share with you if you ask. My goal is to simply share my time and life with my daughter, make memories, and point her to Jesus. And have fun. I think we did all of that and more.
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