Vacation has ended and while it’s good to be home I always miss vacation right after it ends. This year was no exception however it was sort of a bittersweet time away. Being up north with my girls while the rest of my family was south made me think about them often. My intention was to stay in the moment and not think too much but I did. My schedule of stops didn’t go as planned due to the weather being around 60 with light to moderate rain each day so we stayed in Ludington the entire time. As many times as I’ve been to Ludington I always look forward to going back even though you can technically see all you need to in one day. We spent time in Empire (scenic drive) and Hart (silver lake) too just to add vacation value. The hotel we stayed in (Stearns Motor Lodge) was great and priced well too. We only planned to stay there one night but each day I called to book a room. This was partially due to the fact that everything was packed with no vacancies. By the end of the trip we were happy to stay at Stearns.
During the trip, as I always do, I felt nostalgic about the times I spent north with my father and brother so many years ago. One of the things I love most about it in the areas we visited is nothing has changed really. There are the same go-karts, bumper cars, dune rides and restaurants. It’s like stepping back in time. The fact that I’ve taken my family there several times also adds to the nostalgia. Last year I hunted down some spots I remembered as a kid just to see them again but this year I decided to just stick to the path going between point A to point B. That worked up until the last day on the way home. I took a couple back roads thinking I might see something that might bring back a memory but I didn’t. We did find a nice little place off the side of the road with a picnic table and creek where we walked around for a bit but other than that we followed the GPS.
Asking the girls on the way home what their favorite part of the vacation was they had a hard time deciding. For me it was White Pine Village in Ludington. I’ve been there once with the kids five years ago and another time around 15 years ago with Kristen. She wasn’t overly impressed with it but I really enjoy the place. Walking from home to home, each a museum, is interesting to me. This year the girls spent a long time in the village and even when we walked the entire map I was hesitant to leave. If they asked to go back the next day I would have.
Once we got home I realized too that Silver Lake and Ludington are only 3-4 hours away and there’s no reason I can’t take a day or two and visit again this year. The girls are going camping with Kristen and her sister in a couple weekends so you never know.