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Thursday, June 2, 2011

Home Waters

Tourists coming north on M-37 enter Traverse City on a road that is called Division Street in town. After Division intersects Front Street (a left turn would take you into my old neighborhood, a right turn leads downtown), it’s only a few short blocks to Grand Traverse Bay (above), and at that point the tourist can turn right and follow M-37 out to the tip of Old Mission peninsula, where that road ends, or turn left and pick up M-22 at the county line, entering Leelanau County. When David and I have errands in Traverse City, there is no decision to be made when we reach the bayshore. The left turn takes us home. There are, however, many roads home through the county, and yesterday after an errand out M-72 we took “the Cedar way,” turning just past Cedar toward Lake Leelanau past these contented young cattle.

It was a good way to go home and then back up to liberate Bruce and finish out the day at the bookstore before adjourning to Stubb’s Sweetwater Grill with friends visiting from Panama. Later in the evening I got back to my advance copy of Once Upon a River, by Bonnie Jo Campbell, slated for July release. Bonnie will be making a flying visit to Dog Ears, as will Danielle Sosin, whose novel The Long-Shining Waters, set on Lake Superior, I have just finished reading. (See calendar at right for dates and times.) I will need to tell you more about both of these books, but my important reminder today is that it’s only two weeks and a day until Ellen Airgood’s Northport appearance, and I am very excited and eager for that event and hope for a great turnout on Waukazoo Street. Ellen’s story in South of Superior also, like Sosin’s, takes place on the shore of Lake Superior, and it’s got me realizing how watery my 2011 author lineup really is. For real-life adventure, of course, we'll have Loreen Liewenhuis and A 1000-Mile Walk on the Beach and, when fall arrives, The Windward Shore, by Jerry Dennis. Would you believe that this "water theme" came together completely by coincidence? I didn't plan it, but there it seems to be, and what do you expect when our entire state forms two peninsulas? Elizabeth Buzzelli’s new murder mystery might seem an exception, but don’t forget that her main character, Emily Kincaid, lives on Starvation Lake!

My new friend in Australia (no, we've never met) said she liked to imagine that I could see Lake Michigan on some of the walks I take with Sarah in my home neighborhood. Yes, indeed. This is a late yesterday view over waters shimmering almost white in the bright evening sun.


Gerry said...

No matter where we go, no matter what we do, we cannot help but notice that we live in the heart of the Freshwater Nation. It's bound to affect the way we think, the same way it affected the whole history of the place. (Alternatively, of course, all the good books are being written along water themes because all the good writers are tapping into the same stream of consciousness!)

P. J. Grath said...

It must be true. As surely as the ocean or the desert or mountains shape consciousness, the Great Lakes are a huge influence. Woods and waters, in general. We're streaming day and night!

dmarks said...

I know that tree!

Thankfully, there has so far been resistance to complaints from the near by house-owners to cut down all those trees because they block the view.

P. J. Grath said...

Trees are as much view as water. Reminds me of a real estate ad I saw years ago for a house on a treeless lot. Across the street there were trees, so the ad read, "Views of stately pines." I cannot imagine anyone wanting to take the willow out of this scene.