A continuation of my UP vacation blog
If a place like Rhode Island can be a state I see, no reasons why the UP cannot be their own. There is a North Dakota and South Dakota (and those two states population is barley double the UP’s) so maybe there should be a Northern Michigan and a Southern Michigan. The two parts of the state have little in common, socially and economically out side of a vacation destination and a bridge in between. The people north of the bridge, their towns, and the pace of life are vastly different from those on the south side of the Mighty Mac. The UP is an area, a life and way of living in and of its own. The people there have little in common with the lower part of Michigan from what I have seen. Moreover, maybe there better for it, maybe they are the true Michigander, the purists, the realists the people who know how to just…. Live.. I guess without trying too hard to live, too enjoy life and what is there right in front of them. It is a place where a backyard full of trees, where waterfalls and streams down the street is better than a mini mall, starbucks or BigB coffee shop. A place where wild animals roam, the weather is cold and most people there like it that way.
The homes with the exception of somewhere like (small) downtown area of Munising, Manistique, saint ignace, Newberry (the areas I was in) were far apart, this is main street USA at its best. Housing developments full of identical and tacky homes have not ruined and scared the natural and amazing landscape of the UP like they have in the southern part of the lower peninsula. The people live with the natural surroundings; blend in as opposed to trying change them to suit their needs and sad social needs and beliefs. Bears, wolves, moose and deer travel where they will and there is not real call for them to be killed (hunting season NOT included) solely because they are inconvenient like wild animals are in west Michigan. The people there like, love, appreciate and respect nature and do not think it is something that gets in their way and should be pushed aside for so-called progress. More specifically the Grand Rapids area I suppose because god forbid a child see animal in the wild and not in the zoo. In the UP kids like and appreciate nature, and get out in it instead of just “learning” about it like the city kids and kids from the burbs from the shitty part of the state.
As I said, I traveled with my dog and most places I went she was welcome and people were friendly towards. Parents did not get stupidly paranoid and hurry their cretins along at the site and existence of my “big” old dog(hound dog mix mind you). One shop I went to the owners saw her (Harley my dog) sticking her head out my car window and told me too bring her in and gave her treats. The small motel I stayed at in Munising (Sunset on the bay) even provided food and water bowls, poop bags, dog friendly sheet and a few snack bones. You do not see this in west Michigan….EVER, this friendly welcoming atmosphere for dogs is something I have not seen since the last time I was on the Oregon coast with my dog. We all know west Michigan is full of dog haters whether its business’s or apartment complexes or our public beaches. In west Michigan’s gangs run amok, illegal immigrants get jobs and apartments, driver’s licenses, homeless folk wander around downtown Grand Rapids. However, responsible people with friendly-trained dogs are forbidden from going where these “people” are allowed to go to.
The people in the UP, the nature, and the animals, clean and clear water, the water rock formations and woods…. all of it I think is what makes Michigan…Michigan. Not Lansing, not Detroit, not Grand Rapids to lesser degree and certainly not Flint these are holes, embarrassments and eyesores. I think the UP is what really is Michigan, a better part of the state is and how we as Michiganders used to be. It is something that most of the state forgot how to be for the sake of urbanization and industrialization and gross consumerism. The people in the UP have not seemed to forget who they really are and don’t forget the pasties; I think many down in the lower part of Michigan have. At least the ones that live in urban metropolitan sprawl that they call progress have it seems. To the People in the UP they have their own identity and life that is nothing like the anything you will find south of the bridge. I got a lot of writing done up there, had fun with my dog, a lot of peace and actually enjoyed one of the few parts of this wretched state i really enjoy.