Thursday, November 13, 2008

Traverse City

We went on a small road trip up to Traverse City on Tuesday and Wednesday. We stayed at the Cherry Tree Inn right on the bay, and, while the weather was anything but relaxing, it was great to just get away and be us. Tuesday was my day to drive, so I drove us up there. We went to the mall, did our walk, and prowled around in the stores. Then we drove down to the bay, drove along the main road that goes past all the hotels, and found a lovely one with a bay view, a balcony, lots of TV channels (instead of the ONE channel that we get here at Gary's), and free breakfast!

We then took off for the outlet mall, where we roamed about, collecting a few things. We bought Gary a set of nice non-stick cooking pans, a couple of long-sleeved shirts (which will also be good for Tucson) for me, and a meat pounding hammer for Jack! Then we supped at Red Lobster, sharing a meal of scallops, shrimp, and chicken over wild rice.

Wednesday morning, we dined on the free breakfast, then Jack drove us up to the Grand Traverse Lodge, where we had a look around. It's a more lavish hotel than the one where we stayed, with restaurants and fancy shops on the lower floor. We took the clear glass elevator up to the top, where we enjoyed a quick glance at the bay, before heading off for downtown Traverse City.

I enjoyed the walk along the little main street of this quaint tourist town. Shops of all descriptions lined the way, each trying to lure us in, with attractive window presentations. A few managed to do this, and we bought a few things.

Lunch was at the Green House Cafe, where Jack got a hamburger and I had cherry chicken salad on a croissant. Traverse City, by the way, is the cherry capital of the world, with cherry stuff to be found everywhere!

Just as it began to mist rain, we left downtown, and went to the site of the Traverse City State Hospital, a former mental institution, built back in 1885. What a place! It's not just a building on a hill, but a huge complex of buildings. Many are still standing and are being restored as home for an inn, restaurants, and shops. The grounds are now open to the public to stroll or just drive around.

We stopped at an outfitter and at Best Buy on the way out of town. I'm looking for an upgrade for my Garmin -- one that will offer me multi-destination routing. I'm enchanted by the idea of 3D buildings, too! I didn't buy anything yet, as I'm still in the researching phase. I can buy an RV on impulse, but something like a GPS unit requires weeks of careful study!