Friday, April 25, 2014

Pere Market and Mushroom houses

I posted a different shot last year of this mushroom house. It is my favorite.

This year we saw new to us mushroom houses by accessing a private road

I loved this thistle gate

Earl Young also designed the inn that we were staying in including this impressive fireplace

These 150 year old windows he sourced from some castle in Germany. I was trying to show the cute roof of the restaurant he also designed
I am a word play lover. Right now I am attempting to solve my neighbor's crossword puzzle. He has finally made it to the NYT Sunday Puzzle page though I am having some trouble with it. By day, he was my older kids' calculus teacher and I have coached soccer teams with him. Mathematicians make the best puzzle creators, not English majors as I might have guessed.

But I appreciate puns too. On our way up north, we went by a sign for the Pere Market. Many places in Michigan (and the surrounding Great Lakes States) are named after Pere Marquette, the first European to set foot in these parts. Does Pere Marquette have a first name? After all, his counter part in California, Junipero Serra, had a first name, a cool one at that.  Well I looked it up, Jacques. No wonder he just went by with Pere. We were in Pere Marquette township when we spotted the market, not too far from the Pere Marquette River where  Steve and I took a canoe trip before we were married (passed the Canoe Test, a 2 day trip is bound to show aspects of the other that simple dating might not).

Earl Young was an architect living in Charlevoix who favored using natural materials for his unique buildings of which there are about 50.  His favorite material, Onaway stone. Until a bike ride 2 years ago, I never had heard of Onaway (on my way to Onaway) but its name keeps cropping up (Sturgeon capital, home of the big head sculptures, home of the unique stone). Last summer, one of those big head sculptures made its way to the middle of Mackinac Island. Maps are provided with little mushrooms on it for tourists to find the homes. We went to see some of them we had missed previously.

The cold and wind meant that there would be no nice walks. We parked next to the beach to admire the ice piles around the beach and lighthouse. I tried to dissuade Steve from walking on the ice to obtain better photos. Are we not geezers yet? Early bird special meant dinner for about half the price in a restored Victorian home (Charlevoix is very pricey)
the place had several dining rooms. This was ours

Dinner: whitefish (every place has whitefish up here) with beurre blanc and couscous and lobster, shrimp penne

artist's rendition of the place

The food was good. Included was a bottle of wine, which I could not finish by myself though Michigan law now lets you take out unfinished bottles, and a sundae featuring "Saunder's" fudge sauce. How to tell if one grew up around Detroit? Pronounce "Sanders". It should be pronounced pretentiously with the 'ah' sound, not our usual grating Midwestern short 'a' sound. When my mom left home at age 16, she worked in the downtown Sanders restaurant learning to hate all things chocolate. She called it an allergy, which enables one to escape the 'well just try it '. Alzheimer's made her forget her allergy and she started craving chocolate.
While we ate, out the window was a flock of about 12 vultures performing aerobatics. Alas, hard to photograph.

Back at the Inn, we watched the sunset. Our balcony faced the water with its ice floes. The snow showers had morphed into nice clouds, perfect for sunsets. Steve alone took about 50. I took a break for a hot tub experience in a tower that had a 270 degree view. There was a jacuzzi in our room along with a fireplace but I figured correctly I'd have the hot tub to myself and could watch the sunset and the pretty lake inland. The sky was just so beautiful but our photos just couldn't capture the deep purples and oranges.
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