Tuesday, May 14, 2019

A Spring Walk and a Resting Place

No one can say that going to a memorial service for a loved and respected friend is "fun" but when Rick and I headed to Southwestern Michigan for a final farewell to Rick's godmother's husband, we managed to have some fun along the way.


We stopped in Kalamazoo to spend the night before with friends and enjoyed wonderful conversation and a delicious dinner out at a wonderful Middle Eastern restaurant called Zooroona. And on the way home, we took the scenic route.


We've had some wretched weather, loads of rain. But this day was sunny, if cold. Our first stop was through the cute town of South Haven.


It was fun to see open water and seagulls again.


And equally fun to see boats already in their harbor spots, just waiting for good sailing weather.


We cruised through other small towns and ended up at a spot on Michigan's Kal-Haven Trail, for which Rick was responsible for getting built in the 1980s. It is a long bike and hiking trail, stretching from Kalamazoo to South Haven, Michigan. And, it's the spot Rick has chosen for his final resting place.


It was a perfect day for a walk on the trail, even if it was a slow one.


Fiddlehead ferns were out in force.


I loved their wonderful shapes.


We had visited this spot a few years ago, in winter.


It's totally different in the spring.


The trees were flowering and they were so delicate and pretty.


A bee found its pollen supply in full force in a bright dandelion.


It was simply beautiful.


I can see why Rick would like to be "spread out" here one day in the future.


The way-far-out future.

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42 comments:

David M. Gascoigne, said...

The older we get, the more I think we have to convert everything into fun. So, it seems entirely appropriate to me that you took the scenic route home, and Rick got the chance to revisit the trail he created. I am sure that he didn't envisage himself hobbling along on crutches at the time, but maybe because he had to slow down a little this time he saw the trail with new eyes- perhaps caught a little detail that had escaped him before. As far as wanting to make that his final stop on the journey of life is concerned, we can only hope that there is a long time ahead of him before that action has to be taken. It's kind of funny in a way that we think about this "final resting place" when we will be so dead we won't know anyway. Miriam and I have a plot in the green burial section of a local cemetery and will be buried in a manner, and in a location, entirely in keeping with the values and principles we have had in life. There will be little ceremony, little fanfare, exactly the way we would want it. And as a total aside, today I did the first day of a three day teaching stint at the University of Waterloo and it was so good to connect with these eager young students at the other end of their lives. They are keen, idealistic and just starting out. I wish them well and a long and productive life with a commitment to the environment before they even begin to consider the end of it all. The way we are going there may not be much of a world left for them to inherit.

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

What lovely photos of a fun day out, Jeanie. A very meaningful place your sweetie has chosen. I know we don't like to think about it, but we must if we want our wishes known. Spring is definitely on its way to you!

My name is Erika. said...

I think your spring is right about where my spring is too. It's good to see Rick out and about and both of you finally getting some sun. I know what you mean about this springs weather. Hugs-Erika

Misadventures of Widowhood said...

That's my favorite part of our state. I've been on that trail...beautiful! Glad to see Rick up and enjoying his handy work.

Prims By The Water said...

We live on the East side of Michigan. The Spring flowers are just starting to bloom on our side of the state. Glad to see Rick go back and visit something he created. Look forward to reading more of your adventures. Janice

DUTA said...

Good to see Rick 'in motion", and the bee busy with the pollen on the dandelion!

Gina said...

Jeanie, such a beautiful outing although a sad reason to take it. I'm glad you had a sunny day to soak in such lovely nature.

Joyful said...

It is never fun to go and say goodbye to someone for this earthly life but if you can work some nice time and relaxation into such a trip then that is a good thing. I really like the place Rick has chosen as his final resting place. As for me it will probably be in a plot next to my dear mom. It is also where my dear sis is laid to rest. It just makes it easier too for anyone who wants to 'visit' us later, lol. I often visit cemeteries myself. Like David says we hope that Rick will have many fruitful years ahead of him before such a step ever needs to be taken.

Valerie-Jael said...

Glad you had fun in spite of the sad occasion. It looks to be a beautiful place. Good to see Rick on his feet again. Have a great day, hugs, Valerie

Iris Flavia said...

My Dad´s funeral was a desaster (for me), but at my Mum´s we had the big Niece, Mum´s Siblings, we managed to laugh even. Lot´s of "do you remember"´s...
It was a good farewell, you just made precious moments come back to me, thank you (as her oldest Brother, 80 back then, did not allow me to call him "Uncle" as it made him feel old. But he kept calling me "little Iris"... he suffers dimentia now).

Oh, I love the lighthouse! And certainly I miss Seagulls!

Oh, slow, but at least walking, right!

Dandelions are not in bloom here, yet, it´s too cold.

It´s always how you approach something, right.. "Fun" - I hope when I´m gone people can laugh - maybe they´ll think if ugly insects remembering me and Australia :-)

natalia20041989 said...

What lovely phoyos of natute and what a lovely place! I lobe that you are able to see the joy and beauty of life,even during some sorrow. I am following, greetings from Poland ☺

Liz@ HomeandGardeningWithLiz said...

What nice places to visit, especially as you ventured on to the funeral. The Kal-Haven trail looks very peaceful. Rick is quite the trooper- he gets around quite well! I need to visit Grand Haven and see that lighthouse. I’ve seen a few pictures of it during the winter loaded down with ice.

Victoria Zigler said...

It sounds like a beautiful place. I can see why Rick would like to have it for his final resting place. I hope that doesn't happen for many years yet though.

Sketchbook Wandering said...

What a beautiful place!! It is important, for us who are still living, to keep joy in our hearts, even on the way to a funeral. Glad to see Rick out and about. I love the contrast between winter and spring here!

Karen Ann said...


Beautiful place! Perfect final resting spot, and kudos to him for making that trail happen for so many to enjoy!

La Table De Nana said...

He's really coming along! A change in health is so sobering.
Lovely sot Jeanie.

Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

What a beautiful resting place.

eileeninmd said...

Hello, that is awesome that Rick was responsible for the trail getting built. I can see why he picked this spot to be his final resting place. My hubby has a place he wants for his final resting place too. Taking the scenic route is a fun way to go. I like the lighthouse and gulls. The trail looks beautiful. It is good to see Rick getting around. Wishing you a happy day!

Miss Val's Creations said...

What charming scenes on the water! That is awesome that Rick had part in a trail being built. Nature trails are so important in our lives and for future generations. It looks like a peaceful resting place. The fiddleheads are so cute. I am glad spring is showing itself to you guys!

Linda said...

I know that we are getting a very one dimensional look at your relationship but I must say that the part we see.......I just love it. You two are adventurers in your own way and seem to have a ton of fun on the way. Very cool to experience.

William Kendall said...

Quite a difference between winter and now! Terrific shots!

Sami said...

Condolences on the loss of Rick's grandfather.
What a lovely scenic route you took. Love the lighthouse.

Carol said...

What a beautiful place. My friends and I were just talking about South Haven Michigan and possibly taking a trip there soon!

Judy at GoldCountryCottage said...

I hope it is far in the future, but it certainly is a serene and beautiful spot, any season, alive or otherwise. xxoJudy

Judy at GoldCountryCottage said...

Me again, Jeanie. Thanks for your visit. It is raining today so it seems to be settling the pollen down somewhat. My lilacs are through blooming and the junk is still here so guess it wasn't totally the lilacs..Happy Wednesday..xxoJudy

Barb said...

Wonderful spring photos, Jeanie! It’s so good to see Rick out and about. That is a meaningful spot he’s chosen for his final rest. I told Bob to scatter me on a favorite ridge at the ski area - the kids can ski down to me in the winter and hike up to me in the summer. I’d like to be part of the mountains I love.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Memories of friends get us through the otherwise sad event of their passing. It’s good that you and Rick were able to get out to go for a peaceful, if slower paced, walk in a lovely place.

shoreacres said...

I remember you telling some of the history of the trail, and Rick's involvement with it, sometime in the past. The fact that all that took place 30-35 years ago is sobering in its own way. Tempus is fugiting, for sure. and the answers to the question, "How shall I spend this day?" change as the years pass.

It's wonderful to see him out and about, even with those darned crutches. It surprised me to hear that it's still a little cold up there, but it can't be *that* cold -- not with those boats floating in the water!

At Rivercrest Cottage said...

Thank you for taking us along on your trip. We don't get to walk in nature much these days, but it was great going along with you.

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

This was a poignant and beautiful post and one that was quite reflective for Rick, and of course for you, his constant companion, too. It was great to return to a place you remember so fondly and want to see it again before it's too late.

BB said...

The pix of the lighthouse, gulls and the boats int he harbor remind me of when we lived in MD, near Annapolis. Very pretty.

It's good to see Rick getting around.

R's Rue said...

Beautiful

junemac2 said...

Love love love this post, nature and beauty, wish i lived in the country it would be lovely. Instead i go when i can and i plant bluebells and other wildflowers and alpines in our communal garden to look at.

Hugs June x

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

It's wonderful to see Rick out and about, Jeanie. Glad you made some fun out of the occasion. Love the photos. I've never been to that part of Michigan, and now I want to!

Little Wandering Wren said...

Good to see you Guys out and about, even if in sad circumstances. I hope you made a pact that the next time you are on the Kal-Haven trail you want to see Rick hop, skipping and jumping to point out exactly which tree to start the 'spread' from! I'm a bit of an event planner and so also having a good spread is vital to any such do! Does a good spread mean the same thing in the US as in Australia ie some lovely food?!
Do you know Jeanie, I reckon you have a wonderful conversation where ever you are!
Hope that sun keeps shining out your way
Wren x

Olka said...

The way you were going through was amazing! :)

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

You made the most of your trip...that's a very good thing! Nice to see him out for a walk too! I know that felt good! Beautiful sights along the way! Living life to the fullest....I love it!

Lowcarb team member said...

Pleased you were able to enjoy yourselves in spite of the sad occasion.
You've shared some wonderful photographs and it was good to see Rick up and out and about.

All the best Jan

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, I am sorry for Rick’s loss. What a beautiful walk, it is so good to just get out and enjoy nature and it was good to see Rick out and about. Lovely photos!

Jenny Woolf said...

What a gorgeous place. I wonder what that flowering tree was called. Don't you think that tree flowers, although often small and green, have a particular charm and beauty? I am always particularly fond of willow catkins, and love to see them lighting up a tree that has been completely bare such a short time before. I'm still enjoying the new leaves uncurling in different shades of green, but soon nearly everything will be the same summery shade.

Sally Wessely said...

I'm glad you got out and about even if it was for a memorial service. Rick is looking good.

The "Resting Place" is such a beautiful spot. I too can see why Rick has chosen it for his place to rest in the very, very, far off future.

Pam said...

What a beautiful place to walk and take in the sites. I love those ferns, they are to coolest looking things. I have a fern that I found growing right under the edge of the deck last spring. Planted with my rock garden and it actually came back this yr. Its not that kind of fern but I love that I have it growing in the yard. Nature pretty much takes care of it with sun, dirt and rain. I do water on those times that Mother Nature backs off of the rain. So going south for you is Souther Mich.??? HAHA....come to TN, thats south!

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