Living in an RV, part 6: Bogs, Logs, and Fog — The Country Road to Town

In our transition between selling our Michigan house in July and living in the house we bought for after retirement in Wisconsin in November, we are living in a borrowed RV.

The 20-minute drive between the RV park and town is not unpleasant. It is your quintessential Michigan countryside.

There are hills, ponds and bogs.

There are soybean and corn fields, and nice, big red barns.

Much of the shoulderless road is tree-lined, allowing gorgeous travel through tree tunnels. I do look forward in the next couple of weeks when the trees will display their fall colors for us.

And, naturally, on a wooded country road, if a tree falls there are sometimes branches or logs one must swerve around near to or onto the road.

You must be careful to drive more slowly in the nighttime or in fog. As much as the narrow country road is stunningly interesting, you do not want to go off it. One of the ponds along the route has an algae-covered car tire sticking out of it — a warning to other careless drivers.

There is even a haunted house along the way, hidden among the trees, not far from the road. It is easy to miss, draped in tree branches. I will not show you a picture of it. The ghosts may come after me for exposing them.

I do look forward to Jeff’s retirement and living near our grandchildren. I will miss the Michigan countryside and the beautiful sunsets we see in this open space.

The Story of Walking Tree

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The forecast was for partly sunny skies. So we drove the 90 minutes to Michigan’s West Coast only to find it foggy. We wouldn’t have left home if we knew it would be foggy. But once there, and surrounded by December fog, we were up for the adventure. 

It had been a while since we had walked that particular beach. We could only see a few yards ahead of us. The ghostly silhouette of a large tree loomed in front of us. We certainly didn’t remember there being a tree in the middle of the beach, standing tall between the edge of the sand dune and the waves. But it was foggy. Perhaps so were our memories.

Our second thought, separate, yet the same idea struck us, that the water was quite high. It must have been to be so near the base of the tree.

We’d agreed that the turnaround point of our walk was at the tree. However, as we reached it, I had the urge to see it from the other side. I twisted between and beneath the dripping branches. It was then, from that other side, that it became much clearer what had actually happened: the tree had walked down to the beach.

Two other whole trees lay on their sides nearby, their spidery roots exposed to the white air. Following up the sand dune, we noticed other trees, bent out at angles over the dune’s edge. Enlightenment! Through erosion, The trees had slid down the dune. 

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We’ve been on mountain roads where there are signs warning of falling rocks. I recalled the story of Sleeping Bear Dunes and a man walking his dog when the dune collapsed. With the streams of water flowing from the dune base and headed for Lake Michigan, I became a little nervous of other tipped trees anxious to take a walk down to the beach. There ought to have been a warning sign: Beware of Falling Trees. 

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I hope the people in power will leave the tree alone — particularly that one which walked down the dune, remaining upright. It has a chance to continue growing, for it is sure to have sufficient water for its roots, which were fairly covered by the sand. Clear away the debris from the beach, but allow this graceful tree have its second life. Please?