Last fall Mike Brown [Mancelona-raised, now-owner of Deer Park Lodge] and I had a discussion of what category we fit into, re our living up here. “Neither fulltimers, nor natives, and not purely summer people,” he said. “Something else.” Today I was just finishing David Foster Wallace’s Consider the Lobster and Other Essays. In one of the essays he uses the term “demilocal” to refer to people who live a half year in Maine and a half year in New York City area. So demilocals it is — until we find something better.
That said, we’re back for our fifth year in Deer Park in our 288-square-foot cabin on Muskallonge Lake. There is still some snow in the woods, including along our path down to Lake Superior, which is about 300 years north of us. Been so cold here that leaves aren’t all the way out and we are seeing the annual spring warbler migration, which is like trying to watch colorful pellets careening through the trees. So far Lonnie has seen a pair of Cape May warblers, a black and white warbler, and a blackpoll warbler. Been raining since our arrival and this is first day we could actually see well enough to ID birds. Had six bald eagles our first afternoon here, so they are plentiful again. First-time reports of turkeys at Max’s house this winter and not many deer, though Monday they had three there happily eating their remaining tulips. Food is where you find it.
The trip north was “interesting.” Got into our vehicles on Sunday and click-click-click, the battery on the Green Streamer was kaput and we didn’t get away until 3 p.m. My vision started acting blurry around Charlotte and when we got up by East Lansing, I missed the Clare exit north and we ran east to Bath and flipflopped to catch 127 north. Vision sucked all the way up. We stopped at rest area near Alma and the building was closed and port-a-johns set up. Mine tilted and I managed to urinate all over my hand. Nice. South of Harrison I finally, actually looked at my glasses and discovered one of the lenses had fallen out. So I switched to my spare glasses and we continued up to Gaylord.
Next morning I drove down to Saturn books and signed stock while Lon took the glasses to a shop in mall next to our motel and got them fixed, no charge.
Almost 80 degrees when we left Gaylor and 58 miles north of there it was 55 degrees, with howling east wind, which continued until this morning. We stopped in Naubinway and I bought some flies (Betties and BWOs) and we headed up to Noobs through Engadine, stopped for grocks in Noobs, and headed north. 65 degrees in Noobs, but 55 in Pine Stump Junction and as we entered Deer Park it began to pour — huge electrical storm that raged for a couple of hours, monster lightning strikes, the whole deal. Last year we arrived the night the Duck Lake Fire crowned and this time it was T&L. Always interesting. We have gotten 1.2 inches of rain in three days
Had an otter off our dock Tuesday, and this morning a large wolf in neighbor’s yard, about 100 yards from here. Lonnie said the studied she and Shaksper for a long time, then ambled away resolutely. Tonight a large beaver swam nearby Bill’s Peninsula and nibbled some sticks.
And today wifi got installed and I learned speech to Iron Mountain Rotary Club for June 4 has been cancelled. Snow in Crystal Falls this morning, and temp is supposed to be 20 degrees there, 31 here. Winter does NOT want to let go up here. Electronic page proofs for KILLING A COLD ONE came back and I have to go over those as quickly as possible.
Got haircut at Bob’s barbershop yesterday and walked in as discussion began about what happens to ticks inf they are placed in microwaves. And while Lonnie went to Rahilly’s I went to Tahquamenon Area Senior Center to look at books and possible find a small book case and instead witnesses a sustained verbal catfight between an 85 yr old woman and another woman, which ended with the older femal standing in front of rthe story bellowing someone please help me! Very, very weird. After Lonnie dropped me at Bob’s Barbershop she witnessed a lawn fight between male and female. He was on porch, her inside. Screaming F this and F you and so forth” Last year our arrival was greeted by a huge black bear that scampered across M-123 in front of me. Different animal behaviors this year, I guess. Youse never know, eh.
Book signings at Deer Park Lodge, Saturday, May 25, 1130 a.m. – 2 p.m; and in Marquette, Sunday, May 26, Snowbound Books, 1-3 p.m.
All from here. A few pix for the cause follow. Over.