Even with the much longer stay we still couldn’t see all that we wanted to in the Elkhart area, but it was time to move on. Without my knowing it the other six members of our group decided we would head for Michigan and that Monroe, on the shores of Lake Erie, would be our first stop. I don’t normally have difficulty sleeping, but I did that night, anticipating finally getting to see one of the Great Lakes and a state I had heard so much about.
When they made reservations at the state park campsite in Monroe, Michigan, even the veteran travelers were surprised that one of the three spaces was designated handicapped. It really did make life easier. The broad concrete pad was much simpler to step onto when exiting the RV and much easier to cross with a walker than the usual grass, gravel, tan bark, or just plain ground. (Steve says we’re going to get an ATV walker for the next trip. I had brought along my standard hospital-issue aluminum walker, and that, slow as it was, worked better on deep gravel, step by step.)
We were right on the shore of Lake Erie with a wonderful view. Gayle commented that it looked just like the Pacific Ocean, but I felt the waves were lapping the shore much more gently—not the white caps and frothing foam of the ocean or the deep swells far out. And on a distant shoreline across the lake stood a decommissioned nuclear plant, in another direction an industrial tower, spouting smoke. These were distant enough, though, not to detract from the beauty of the lake.
As a teenager Steve had spent summers in Pinckley, Michigan, with his grandparents, helping with summer chores. It was about an hour’s drive away, so after he got the rig set up in the park we three and the dog took off for Pinckley and found the house and memories. We didn’t find the post office, but there were two restaurants, one with no cars parked in front, and another with a bunch of motorcycles, so we decided to find another town for dinner.
In traveling through the different time zones as we had and then beginning to head north, we became very much aware of the different amounts of daylight from location to location. Temperatures and weather were also interesting, from very warm to very cold. One day in Elkhart, Indiana, 82 degrees, high humidity and thunderstorms. The next, in Monroe, in the 50s.
I finally got to see one of the Great Lakes—under a full moon as a bonus.
Trivia Question: How and when did time zones in the United States originate?