Where Bicycles Ruled the Earth

I guess I should first mention that I added more pictures to the gallery and i’ll try to explain some of what has gone on this past week or so.

First on the itinerary was a stop at Mackinac Island. Some people may remember we had to cancel this excursion the last time we went through the area due to inclement weather. Well this time was the complete opposite, the weather was absolutely perfect and we accomplished most everything we wanted to do on the island.

For those that are unaware of what Mackinac island is all about, the whole island is a National Historical Landmark due to the preservation of the island. Another neat thing that I really enjoyed about the island is that almost all motorized vehicles are banned there. The exceptions to this rule being the emergency vehicles (we didn’t see any, but I understand they exist on the island), airplanes (my uncle and I think my cousin has landed on this island), and lawn mowers. So as you can imagine the island is somewhat peaceful with only bicycles, horses, and two legs to get you from place to place. We all rode bikes around the island one day which was really fun and I think just about everyone that goes to the island rides bikes around. We got fudge, which the island is known for. We did a fair amount of hiking on the interior of the island. So all around it’s a neat place to visit for a few days.

Our next stop was up at Basswood Lake up in Ontario Canada. Thanks goes to Bob and Marilyn Kellum who hosted us all. Every day on the lake has a happy hour with lots of alcohol and pupu’s followed by a most excellent meal. I managed to read a few books, went on a few adventures (got my rowing in, along with a trip on a kayak, canoe, and a row boat), went on a few power boat rides, and generally lazed about on the lake.

On a completely different note today marks the end of the trip for my mom and dad who head home today. It’s hard to understand for me that two months have come and gone, we did a lot in such a short time. I think most if not all of the agenda items for them were accomplished while being up here so all in all it was a successful trip for them. It was sort of a role-reversal today where I was dropping them off at the airport. My parting words of wisdom for them was “don’t get into trouble you two.”

Going Up North

Grizzly Adams checking in.

We leave for Canada tommorow so i’ll be out of touch until this weekend. We’ll be staying at a cabin on Little Trout Lake (i think thats the name) which belongs to a friend of my aunties. I think i’ll try and go fishing, row around the lake a bit and just chillout; as if my summer hasn’t already been chill enough.

On a seperate note I no longer have a cell phone. As many of you know I never really wanted a cell phone so once again the debate is whether or not to get a cell phone; that being said the easiest way to reach me now is via email.

We spent the last few days on what used to be my grandparents farm with my uncle and cousin. I think I got to live out the dream of many children this week by getting to drive around a backhoe. It really is everything it’s cracked up to be as moving around in a 50 ton machine is very empowering. Other than that we just putzed around the farm a bit and helped out here and there, so not all that much to share.

Just In Time For a Wedding

Current Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan

It’s been a pretty good week since leaving Waukegan. We drove all the way through Wisconsin through the upper penninsula of Michigan on past the Macinac bridge and finally down to Ann Arbor Michigan. We had to postpone the trip to Macinaw island because the weather was so bad we could barely see 30 feet in front of us so it would have made the trip almost worthless, so the next plan is to stop by on the way to Canada. We are staying with my auntie and uncle here for the forseeable future with a small side trip to Canada later in the month.

Up in the northern part of Wisconsin is where my grandmother was raised so one of the things on my dads checklist was to try and find the old farmstead. The last time being there for him was when he was about 9 years old so finding it was tricky. He knew a few of the landmarks like the old school house and an old co-op which might or might not have been there, fortunately for us they were all intact (sorta.) Finding the exact farmstead on the other hand wasn’t as easy, dad knew a few things but wasn’t ceartain what road it was on but knew that the driveway went up a hill before coming down to the houses. We ended up driving around the roads that he thought lead to the house for a while and came up with 2 possibilities for what might have been the farmstead with the second one dad felt was the right place. We later got confirmation that what dad thought was the right place was indeed the correct spot, so we went back and took a load of pictures from what remained of that place.

We arrived here this past Wednesday just in time to help lend a hand for my cousin Rachels wedding which took place last night so things have been fairly busy since arriving. One thing I got to do was mow four acres of lawn on a riding mower which i’ve always wanted to try, so hurrah for that. It was a nice ceremony and dinner with a large portion of the Kirk family (moms side) attending, only people missing was Derek & Nikki. Otherwise everyone else was in attendance.

I think things will slow down a little from here for a while, but I have to put some more time into finding a bicycle soon so I can start getting ready for the Michigander. I updated pictures from the trip through Wisconsin and the Upper Penninsula and I’ll have some from the wedding up tommorow most likely.

Pau Hana

Current Location: Wausau, Wisconsin

Well the final garage sale is done and we’re on the move again. The final take for garage sales was just over $1,200.00. When you pu that into perspective it’s hard to imagine selling all the items of a household for that amount, but at least the task is complete. As for the fate of the 400 some-odd posters they were donated to a local high school social-studies department who were very grateful. As for the rest of the stuff most of it was donated to grandmas old church and the salvation army.

We then spent the following three days cleaning the house from top to bottom while the nights for me were spent reading since the TV got sold on Sunday as well. Yesterday we cleaned until about 2 o’clock until Stanley Steemer arrived and cleaned the carpet for us. So as that dried we went and caught the new Indiana Jones movie and some dinner. Today we planned to be on the road by 11 o’clock but it turns out we had a lot more to do than planned so we got out of there at 1:30pm.

We’re on the road north through Wisconsin to Hurley which is where my fathers granparents raised their kids so we’re off to find the old farm and do some research on Finnish history. We’ll then head south through the Upper Penninsula (UP) of Michigan to Ann Arbor visiting family on the way.

Sorry about no new pictures, now that i’m on the road again I hope to be able to add to the gallery in the next few days.

Round Two

Well we are now officially 2/3’s done with garage sales, huzzah! Todays take was just north of $250 which puts the grand total at around $752.00, too bad thats also the price for a gallon of gasoline right now. Surprisingly enough having a garage sale on a Friday isn’t as bad an idea as I thought it might have been, the turnout was actually better than last week on a Saturday. My guess is there are less garage sales to compete with on a Friday. We actually had a time when the garage was completely full of people which was kinda nice to see so much of it going.

Sunday is our last garage sale when everything will be out there including all the furniture we are currently using including the bed i’m sleeping on (i’ll be moving to the basement couch which is staying with the house since dad doesn’t want to move that beast out of the basement.) Then it’s on to cleaning the house which is scheduled to be completed by Thursday at the latest.

Not much else going on around here, i’m looking forward to Macinac island which we will hopefully get to visit. We are also going to the northern part of Wisconsin to see where my dads grandparents grew up.

Everything Must Go

Hooray, We just finished our first garage sale today. Our grand total was $502.00, though that number is a little artificially inflated due to selling of a sterling silver silverware set to a gentleman for $250.00.

I must say that the turnout was pretty good even if the newspaper got the address wrong in the paper. We sold a little bit of everything from the folding bed in the attic to a few of the hundreds of posters my dad had collected through the years. Speaking of the posters one gentleman actually spent a full hour flipping through each and every poster just to find the ones he wanted; at a nickel a piece you can’t go wrong for a poster.

We have two more sales to go then whats left is given to the Salvation Army. I’ve posted a few pictures from todays sale. The Waukegan leg of this trip will be over in about a week and a half, then it’s on to mysterious Michigan.

So Much Stuff

I’ve posted a few pictures that i’ve taken while trying to sort through all of grandmas stuff. So far the coolest things we’ve found have been a mink coat/cape thingie thats still in perfect condition (dad says it belonged to his grandmother.) We found a folding camera which took me a while to figure out how to change the film. We found news papers from 1908; let me put that into perspective, thats the end of World War 1… let that sink in for a second. World. War. 1. Jeeze thats old. We found a bunch of stuff my dad sent back from africa like a crossbow, a drum made of zebra hide, some other drums, a sword from Indonesia I think.

We cleaned out the attic today where dad was storing what mom and I estimate to be 1000 posters, sooo if anyone has a desire of a poster let me know. We are also sorting through boxes and boxes and boxes of pictures. I think grandma tucked pictures away into every nook and cranny possible in this house, it seems that every cupboard that we open we find more pictures to sort through.

I’ve updated some pictures in the Road Trip gallery, i’ve also sorted it so the newest pictures are at the beginning instead of the end wihch makes a ton more sense.

Home? at Last

Distance Travelled: 2844.7

Current Location: Waukegan, Illinoise

I have reached the final destination of this road trip but I can hardly call this place home, I’m not sure if i’ll be afforded that luxury for the forseeable future. Someone was talking about how much fun it is to go on vacation and that coming ’home’ is that much more gratifying. I’m sure coming home after a 2 year vacation will be infinately enjoyable.

It was kinda sad leaving Minnesota thanks to the family thats there. What a great bunch of people up there that treat us great. If it weren’t for the sub 0 temperatures that plague that area I might think of moving there but I think a Maui boy like me would be a popsicle at the first snow.

Thanks goes to Jess, Lou, Uncle Donney and Aunt Betty, Rob, Patty, MaryBeth, Ruthie, Jim, Theresa and everyone else up there. I’ve gotten a few invitations to head back up that way which I intend on taking up so I can learn to sail and jet ski, and do more visiting. These are things i’ve heard about since the beginning of time so I can’t wait.

We started work on Grandmas house today, we cleaned out the garage and got that in a decent enough condition. This is the staging area for our upcoming garage sales; looking through the house we have a ton of work ahead of us. If anyone needs anything in the greater Chicago area let me know, we got a house full of stuff that needs a home.

A Foreign Man in a Cold Land

Finally got my computer working again, it turned out my 6 year old harddrive on my laptop bit the dust.I really must find a way of backing up all my pictures, fortunately it’s been a while since i’ve deleted all the images off of my compact flash card.

Everything is going fairly well, been spending a lot of time with family up here. It’s great to get anopprotunity to spend time with family like this.

I’ve added pictures in the album. Mt. Rushmore is now there along with pictures of my uncles cabin onMille Lacs Lake and a visit with our old family doctor who now lives here in Minnesota.

We plan to be leaving for Waukegan on Friday morning so I expect we’ll be hard at work on Saturday morning.

The End of the Road… Almost

Distance Travelled: 2444.3

Current Location: St. Paul, Minnesota

Huzzah, I made it here a little before I planned to but I made it in once piece. Which is more than I can say about my laptop which has decided to kick the bucket. I’ll try to get that in working order sometime this weekend so until then updates will be a little infrequent.