Saturday, June 17, 2017


As I write this, I am sitting in front of my computer in my home office in Santa Clarita, CA. I left SLC this morning and took a Delta flight back to civilization. My first thought as I stepped off the place was, "It is stinking hot here!"

Yesterday, Friday, was our 5th and final day in Algonac. Carissa and I woke late and ate leftover fried mushrooms for breakfast. Yum! Having pretty much exhausted everything possible to do and see in Algonac, we decided to drive to Flint and grab lunch and maybe a nap before our afternoon flight to Utah.

You might wonder why we got such a late flight flight out of town (departed Flint at 11:30am and arrived in SLC at 10:30pm). That's because flights out of Flint seem to be few and far between. Despite the luxury of the airport, it was nearly empty the whole time we were there. When we got our boarding passes and asked about our flight, the attendant said, "There's only one." Well, we did see there was a second flight later in the evening, heading to Oklahoma, I think. Anyway, I didn't really have many flights to choose from.

On our way to Flint, I am sad to say that a bird struck our car. It literally crashed into the windshield. Nothing could have been done to prevent it. Being the bird-lover she is, Carissa got out of the car and scooped up the fatally wounded bird into her gentle palms. We did try to locate a bird rescue, but the nearest one was in Ann Arbor and I had no idea how far away that was. It wouldn't have mattered anyway. The little thing died a few minutes later, which was probably for the best. We just felt at peace that at least the creature hadn't died alone or on the street where it would have been run over. After it passed, Carissa laid it beneath a tree. Sadly, we've notice a lot of roadkill along the roads to and from Algonac. Beaver, birds, and deer galore. So much wildlife here--I guess it's what happens when nature and man collide.

Once in Flint, we stopped at The Olive Garden for lunch. Yes, Carissa thoroughly washed her hands first!!! We enjoyed soup and salad. I took a short nap in the car, then we filled up the tank and drove to the airport where we just hung out for a while. The flight to Chicago was uneventful. We had an unbearingly long three-hour layover there. We ate some Chinese food, and I chatted with a lovely Mormon couple who were heading to London and shared our experiences with family history. Eventually we got on the plane. The seats were so uncomfortable! It felt like forever before we finally landed in SLC.

We reached Carissa's home at about 11:30pm only to learn that my son, Stuart, was just ten minutes away in Sandy with his Boy Scout troop. They had just returned from a kayaking/camping trip in Yellowstone and were sleeping at a friend's house before heading back to California today. So of course we had to drive to Sandy to see Stuart. Just a short visit. Stuart came outside to meet us--wearing his Sunday suit complete with bow tie. Why? Because, he explained, all his clothes had gotten wet so he was going to sleep in his suit. (They brought their suits to visit the temple earlier that day.) I suggested he at least not sleep in his tie.

Back to Carissa's. I had a deep night's sleep. Got up. Showered. Enjoyed a lovely breakfast made by Carissa and her husband Cash. Visited with my grandbirdies, Mango and Zooks. And left for the airport. There were some tears on Carissa's part. It's hard to say goodbye. We miss each other so much. I hate living so far from her, but this week was a dream come true for me, and I'm so glad I got to share it with her...and with all of you.

What's next?

First on my list is to figure out the identities of the two additional family members buried in the Algonac cemetery. Next, I will begin the planning stages for writing a book. There are still lots of questions to answer. I am hoping to visit my Aunt Larry soon to ask those questions. Maybe, if all goes well, by the end of 2018 I may have a rough draft in hand. We shall see. In the meantime, I'm just glad I finally got to Algonac, to walk where my ancestors walked, to take in the view they once enjoyed, and to learn more about the town they loved so much.

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