Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Wilbo Takes a Drive Up to White Lake, Live It, and He Goes from the White Duck Market to Lakes of Fire.

The stand at Schneider Hill Farm had stocks of rhubarb and onions and one bag of summer salad mix. I pounced on it and yet missed the Mud Lake greens. Saturday, my guy from Mud Lake Farms worried me because he didn't take a booth. And no one really had fresh, washed mixed greens like him at the various booths around the market. He delivers all week long to farm to table restaurants and maybe this ...week he had little surplus to sell? I have toyed with raising my own, hoping enough summer remained to fill my salad bowl and keep it full. I imagine building a green house to extend the season, yet in January will there be sun enough to raise the finer, delicate greens. Cabbage is all right, probably grows in winter light, but coleslaw is hardly my quest. It's enough to make a guy move south.

Second time I've gone to the White Duck Market and failed to find a Klondike Bar. The fridge stocks a choco-taco branded as a Klondike ice cream treat but hardly the same. Passed on the offerings of chili dogs, mini-pizzas and pulled pork sandwiches added to the ice cream bar at the White Duck. Fellow enjoying a pair of pulled pork sandwiches on the front deck said he enjoyed them, all the summer... time food priced as packages, two chili dogs or two sandwiches. He added onion rings instead of fries. Guess the dad who owns this place has to buck up revenue and short of putting up a real printed sign, he has done a nice job of adding hot food to his ice cream parlor. The peonies in the garden near the White Duck Markets sign are glowing in Ides of June floral glory.

Sadly, smoke houses behind Doug Born's store in Montague haven't had a load of meat nor fish for a long time. The business struggled without its founder and now a good source of modestly priced meat is no longer. Talked with Doug when he was still keeping office hours in the small room where he did paperwork. He wanted a quarter-million for the business and property. It's a familiar number. Show me a small business with owners who want to retire and I'll show you the asking price, a quarter-million. It's a number I heard again and again in the Upper Peninsula. It's tough being a sole proprietor, learning in the end that you were the prime asset of the business. How can better business education as early as high school help but prevent hard working people from this trap? Mile 4969.

Saw an odd contraption pulled behind a truck. The truck stopped at the McCormack Gas Station at the Fruitvale Exit to US-31. It had the look of a thresher but threshers hardly require a dragon's head made of clay. Two men were filling up gas cans with gas and I just had to ask. Turns out, the men had built a fiery ferris wheel. This is a sign that an annual event has returned to Lucky Lake in Ocea...na Country, Lakes of Fire, hosted by Michigan's contingent of Burning Man participants. The men were visibly excited because the doors open Wednesday to the now sold out event that celebrates mythical creatures as this year's theme. They talked generously because at minimum Burners share their stoke, if not more, a tribal concept called gifting. It shouldn't make me envious but it does. I'm missing many summer events, and have yet to kayak.

— at Lucky Lake Campground & Outdoor Center LLC.

I think Brooklyn's Beans, Bombers and Bagels has nailed the new concept for their franchise. Hoping the idea prospers as this food service concept came up locally. I'm sitting in this big, clean, well-lit freshly constructed interior with huge and plentiful windows. Can't think of a better perch to watch to watch a cloudburst falling with uncountable raindrops pinging the parking lot. Brooklyn's went big on the old Muskegon photographs, finding a few fresh ones in the Radium Photography archive. One has a message on side of a building worth heeding. Muskegon's Population 31400. All Boosters. No Knockers. Things that will make Muskegon the largest city in West Michigan. Fine Harbor. The Very Best of Schools. Good Pure Water. Fine Sewerage System. 50 Miles of Well Paved Streets. Excellent Banking Facilities. Fine Modern Stores. Big Prosperous Factories. Finest Climate In The World. Look Us Over. Goes to show that civic pride is hardly a new feeling in town.
— at Brooklyn Bagels CafĂ©.

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