Now nothing seems as strange as when the leaves began to change . . . or how we thought those days would never end . . . it was summer time in Northern Michigan . . .
~ Kid Rock
Oh, Michigan Summer! That fleeting stretch of days that fall sometime between July and August and rival Christmas for the anticipation and the magic. Northern summers. Long, languorous days that ficklely fade into balmy, billion star nights or cool fire-lit forays . . . the buzz of cicadas and fresh garden tomatoes and children splashing in cerulean blue pools until the fading sun calls them to dinner . . . Fireflies at dusk and the earthy scent of thousands of backyard bonfires drifting over neighborhoods and stretching wide through campfire woods and to the riverbanks of the Grand and the AuSable and the Shiawassee and the Manistique . . . Sleeping Bear sand dune mesas reached on aching legs under an unforgiving sun . . . just for the multitudes to gaze over giant, ancient lakes. A cool glass of Merlot under a warm night moon . . . or the Northern lights over the Mackinaw Bridge for the very lucky . . .
I realize that right about now I'm sounding like Tim Allen on a Pure Michigan ad, but really! Doesn't the yearning begin to take you there when you're hit with an icy blast on a Thursday morning in April? Ferryboats and fudge and dodging horses on Mackinaw Island . . . Drinking wine coolers and falling off water skis on Wamplers Lake . . . Up North cabins on Crystal Lake, motorcycles on backwoods highline trails, telling ghost stories around campfires, and rainy night Monopoly games . . . Fireworks in the suburbs that scare your dog under the bed and fireworks for two countries over the Detroit River . . . Farmers markets and county fairs . . .
What is your Michigan summer memory?
I know it's not just this Michigan girl standing at the window, palms gripping the warm ceramic of a sunflower teacup, while wrapped in a fuzzy, oversized bathrobe, and gazing imploringly Heavenward. Let's all curse and pray. Like all Michiganders do every spring on thirty-five degree days. It's that time of year again.