Posts Tagged ‘lake michigan’

The Shores of Lake Michigan

Tuesday, July 10th, 2018

The last few days of our road trip have been a whirlwind of activity that took us from Sioux Falls, South Dakota all the way to East Jordan, Michigan.

First of all, Sioux Falls really impressed me! The Falls Park just outside of downtown there is a lush expanse of green broken up by a massive waterfall system.

The cascading water brings life to this charming midwest town.

It was a wonderful start to our day especially since we didn’t do much else for the rest of the day. We spent the night in Madison, Wisconsin which is a place I really do love but we didn’t have much time to stay around or do things.

We blasted on through Madison for a long two day series of adventure up the western shore of Michigan along Lake Michigan. I never truly experienced the wonders of western Michigan but the coast of Lake Michigan was full of surprising gems and crystal clear waters.

We tried to stop at as many lighthouses on our way up north as possible. Here are a few of my favorites:

Big Red in Holland, Michigan

Holland was a wonderful town and I especially loved the windmills that truly evoke the dutch country Holland is named after.

Point Betsie Lighthouse near Frankfort, Michigan

Manistee Lighthouse, Manistee

Ludington Lighthouse

The only thing that rivaled the beauty of the lighthouses was the stunning gradient of sapphire and emerald colors in the water.

Our major destination along the western coast of Michigan was Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Driving through the covered bridge bearing the National Park insignia was the marker that we had arrived!

We ran up and down the dunes, marveling at the spectacular Lake Michigan waters.

It felt like we had escaped to the Caribbean even though we were in the middle of Michigan. This country constantly surprises me with the exotic scenery.

The history contained within the boundaries of this small lakeshore national park was thrilling to experience.  There were so many old shipping buildings, barns, and manufacturing spaces.

Of all the small towns we stopped in I enjoyed Leland’s Fishtown the most. This charming fish village offered emerald waters, old world homes, and entertaining fishing boats with great names like Joy.

The drive through Michigan had a lot of ups and downs but was full of joy. After many different towns, lots of swimming in Lake Michigan, and an impromptu trip to urgent care after stepping on a rusty pin we made it to our final destination: Petoskey. We stayed south of Petoskey for a few days where I got to watch my cousin get married! But that story is for next time ūüôā

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Northwestern

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015

On the hunt for a new home, seeking graduate school with great coffee, better books, astounding architecture and a cohort of inspiring academics. I am touring graduate schools across the nation while I drive, and had to stop at Northwestern in Evanston, IL. So I took a whole day off by myself to drive up there and tour around the campus. But first, I grabbed coffee at Caffe Streets on Division to prepare myself for the adventure to come. Honestly, it has been really hard on me visiting graduate schools when my heart still belongs in Berkeley. I miss my academic home dearly and all of my friends who are still there. Nothing makes the sting of nostalgia¬†more painful than the constant reminder of what you left behind by where you are going next. Trying to find a new home when I don’t want to give up the last is a brutal conditioning towards the constant change of my future. Despite my deep desire for everything to remain exactly the same, the world is shifting underneath my feet and I can either get off the crumbling rock or let my fear paralyze me.

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The cup of coffee and an hour spent in contemplation of strangers walking down the street brought me back to reality: I had things to accomplish and places to see. I did make one more pit stop at an amazing bakery with zombie head cakes in the window before I left though. These mind-blowingly realistic cakes were courtesy of Alliance Bakery. I grabbed some breakfast and hit the road; this coastal drive was far different from the ones I was used to in California. Normally the ocean is my coastal companion, but this time Lake Michigan lined the road I drove on towards Evanston.

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I toured the entire campus for several hours making some especially long stops at the English Department in University Hall and the main libraries, Deering and University Libraries.

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The views all around campus where beautiful and very nicely accented by the fall leaves and the emerald hues of Lake Michigan. The gardens and greenery all around the campus were stunningly beautiful and the entire trip was exceedingly pleasant all around. I thoroughly enjoyed the school and everything the campus had to offer.

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After walking the entire campus I finally (and begrudgingly) left Northwestern. However, when I got back to Chicago I visited another fantastic coffee shop in Pilsen called Cafe Jumping Bean, which served as the perfect end to a long day.

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