Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Small Town or City Slicker?

In Braking For Bodies, second book in the Cycle Path mystery seriesEvie Bloomfield’s BFF is accused of murdering her old boss, Peephole Perry. The guy’s a first class sleaze and rag reporter for an LA tabloid, and got his name from peeking into people’s business then blackmailing them. But that’s in LA...or is it? And what is this jerk doing on Mackinac Island? 

Mackinac is a real island, an eight-mile chunk of land where Lake Michigan meets Lake Huron. When the lakes freeze...or as the islanders call it “the ice makes...there is no ferry, very limited plane service and if the ice is think enough snowmobiles are the way off the place. They run day and night across the frozen lake to the mainland, the safe route where the ice is think marked by the saved Christmas trees.

So the question is, could you live here year-round?

Without cars it’s so quiet and the island is a throwback to the 1800s with vintage baseball, parades for every occasion like the Lilac Festival, Horse Festival, Fudge Festival etc. There’s the town gazebo for live music, dressing for dinner at the Grand Hotel along with high tea, horse drawn carriages with men in top hats and formal attire.

One of the best parts of Mackinac Island is waking up to the clip clop of horses’ hooves on cobblestone. Often the whole island is cocooned in dense fog with the foghorns moaning out in the harbor. If you stay on the island for any time at all you’ll be in the best shape of you life with having to walk everywhere.  And there is nothing like sunset over the Mackinaw Bridge to take your breath away. 

This all sounds amazing to many of us and like a death sentence to others. First off there is no mall! There is no WalM256art, big box store of any sort, no free wifi except at Horn’s bar and the library. Often your cell phone won’t work and you’ll be hanging over the end of the pier to get reception for that oh so important phone call. There are only 500 permanent residents so things get a bit confining and in the winter the way to school is on your snowmobile with the sixty other students.

There are bicycles and horses everywhere and festivals galore such as the Lilac Festival, Fudge Festival, Jazz, Horse, etc. They are all fun and everyone turns out to watch. It’s things like this that brings the whole island together.

So what do you think? Are you an island person or a big city guy or gal? Do you really need that car and mall or do you like the thought of snowmobiling, biking and parking your horse at the curb?

Duffy Brown

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