This will be my last post about Leelanau Peninsula in Michigan. I could talk about it for much longer but there are other things happening and I’m bursting to write about them as well! I couldn’t possibly skip the story about going to sleeping bear dunes because it was the first time in all the years we’ve visited that I actually trekked the whole way to lake Michigan.
Usually going to Sleeping Bear Dunes is a good idea of a group outing where it takes a long time to pack a cooler, smear sunscreen and load up a food basket. We drive through the little town of Glen Arbor (another favorite) and enter the national park. Before our eyes is an enormous hill of sand with a blue sky cresting the rim. The kids are hardly out of the car before they are scrambling up the hill. For the little ones, half way up they are whining to be carried. Making it to the top is necessary though if you want to experience the fun of running down hill with gravity increasing your speed, so they all make it- but usually only once, maybe twice, and then that’s it. They’re hot, tired, hungry, and ready to go home.
This year I said, no way are we going there as a group. I want to hike the whole thing. It’s an hour hike to reach the beach of Lake Michigan. I asked Donny, who is also a fitness fanatic if he’d go with me, and he was eager to do it again. (He and Jordan did it last year when I stayed back at the house.) So we slipped out of the house early one morning before anyone else had stirred.
Once our feet hit the sand I asked him to tell me the whole story of his mission trip to India. He’d been back for two weeks, but we’d been surrounded by cousins and family so much that we hadn’t had one minute alone to share the experience. And I was so eager to get the whole story, not little bits. We were almost entirely alone on the dunes that morning, except for a couple runners, so we hiked and marveled at the beauty for an hour until we reached the beach. He wasn’t finished yet with his stories, so we hiked back and just before we reached the big hill to run down he had exhausted his storehouse of experiences serving in India.
I treasured this time with him more than I can describe. He’s now less than two weeks away from going to college. His friends have swallowed him up now that we are home as everyone is having last goodbyes. I doubt we’ll have a long walk like that again for a while. I picked up a stone from the beach that morning and I kept it so I’d always remember the great talk we shared that day. I look forward to many more long walks with him, as he has tales of new adventures he will have outside of our home. I understand a new phase of our relationship is beginning. I am ready for it, but I am also still very sad. I am going to miss my Donny being here with us all.
I would describe to you his adventure in India, but he wrote it himself. I have post
ed it in a new post following this one.