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Sunday, September 11, 2016
Just in Time; Bearing Witness
Wednesday, our big travel day north, skies were grey and cloudy, but on Thursday morning the sun whisked away the lingering wispy clouds, and to my mind the signals were clear: time to head out to Grand Sable Lake.
The water felt chilly at first, of course, but not so cold that skin didn’t adjust to it quickly, and then the feeling was heavenly, soft and silky smooth. My first swim of 2016 was worth waiting for! On the other hand, I was glad I didn’t wait any longer, because cloudy skies returned on Friday.
Besides a vacation swim, another pilgrimage I anticipate eagerly is our trip to Munising by way of the Kingston Plains. I find the very name “Kingston Plains” thrilling, and when I admitted as much to David, he said he had always felt that way about the Penoyer High Banks (which I may or may not be spelling correctly). Kingston Plains is what remains since lumbering days took off the original giant white pines, leaving fields of nothing but stumps. It has taken many years for small trees to appear, and most of the vegetation is still lichen, bracken, and blueberries.
But I made an exciting discovery in 2012, and since then have enjoyed returning to seek out again the remains of the old bearing tree, or, as I like to call it, witness tree.
Seeing the markers in these photos probably makes them look obvious. Spotting one old stump among many from a distance still looks easy in my photos below, but onsite it is far trickier than I have made it look here.
Sarah is not much interested in historical survey markers, but she likes the Kingston Plains, too, because I always give her a chance to explore off-leash. Yes, it’s good to let our animal spirits expand and breathe deeply in this lovely place where nature is slowly healing the scars of the past.
I told David that if I die before he does, he should scatter at least a portion of my ashes at the foot of the witness tree but that he will probably need some help finding it. There! My wishes are on public record.