September’s Adventure: America’s Last Steamship

Please excuse my recent disappearance.

Happily, I have come back with some stories from our first micro-adventure. Remember, we will be going on one every month during the “off season” this year. I have to say that we started out with what will probably be the most exciting adventure of the year–a trip on the S.S. Badger. Here are some stories from our adventures:

“Boatel” and Lake Crossing
The Badger is the last operating coal-fired steamship in the U.S., and its license expires in December. As it stands, the EPA may not renew its permit. We’re definitely hoping they are able to work something out.

We dropped Jelly Bean off and Grandma and Grandpa’s house, then headed to Ludington Friday evening. We spent the night on the ship, in our stateroom, then enjoyed breakfast on board right before we left port at 9:00. We cruised 4 hours to Manitowoc, Wisconsin. (Even though we’ve lived in Michigan our entire lives, neither of us had actually been to Wisconsin before!). After spending a couple hours in town, we returned to the ship to cross back to Ludington.

We were actually hoping for slightly rough seas, and we weren’t disappointed. There were 30 knot winds and 7 foot waves. Definitely nothing that the Badger couldn’t handle, but not weather that we would voluntarily sail Moonraker in (as we learned our lesson on the passage to South Manitou).

There was plenty to do on the ship, with a movie room, restaurant, bar, Bingo, a store, an arcade, and a kids’ room. We really just enjoyed sitting by the window (it was a bit cold outside!) and watching the water. We’ve definitely missed it!

The Spartan, the Badgers sister ship, now used for parts.

The view from our stateroom.

It was rough, but we had company on the Lake.

Docking in Manitowoc was a little rough, because of the strong winds.

Other company on the Lake.

We wouldnt have gone out, but these sailors seemed to be doing very well crossing the Lake!

It was obvious which port the captain favored, as everyone watching us in Ludington got a master salute!

I was not used to wearing my hair down in this kind of wind!

The perfect end to the perfect adventure!

The Minor Disaster
This time, the disaster happened on land, and it didn’t involve flames shooting out of a battery charger.

I don’t carry a purse, because I’ve found that I always leave them places, leading to many mini-panic sessions (or I don’t notice, and get a phone call later). Over the winter, I began carrying a wallet, later replaced by a change purse, in my coat pocket. I always kept it there, so it was never a problem. In the summer, I started out just carrying the change purse, but I worried that I would drop it while I was boarding the dinghy. Rob had the solution–he cut a length of rigging line, and I tied it around my neck. That’s how I wore the purse all summer.

Going back to work, the purse went back in my pocket, but nostalgia took over this weekend. So around my neck it went.

I paid for our hotel room Saturday night, after the cruise, then I helped unload our suitcases into our room. We were both hungry, and I knew that the specialty market in Ludington had great crab salad.

On the way there, we stopped at the beach and watched the most beautiful sunset we have seen in our lives. We didn’t have a camera, but it was a sight we will never forget.

We got to the market and ordered the salad. It was then that I noticed the line around my neck, untied.

I had used the wallet to pay for our room, and since then we had only been three places. So the odds were in our favor. We combed the store, the parking lot, the beach, the hotel parking lot, and our room. Nothing. We had no money and no access to our money.

Thankfully, my parents came to our rescue, and we learned how to do a Moneygram. (Luckily, Rob didn’t have his license in my wallet, or we would not have been able to receive it!).

So, all’s well that ends well!

The Best Hotel Ever
You’ve got to see this hotel. It’s called Nader’s Lakeside Motor Inn, and it’s definitely the best place we’ve ever stayed. We get the Jacuzzi suite, which is comprised of three rooms off of a hallway. This was a fun couple’s getaway, but it would also work well with Beanie, as she could sleep on the Fouton, in the dining room. We plan to go there again, when things are less stressful.

Meanwhile, at Grandma and Grandpa’s House
And while we were gone, Jelly Bean was having fun of her own!

First, the make-up…

And since she was looking like a rock star…

Make-up’s good, so now it’s time to work on the hair…

One thought on “September’s Adventure: America’s Last Steamship

  1. Pingback: A Fall Filled With Adventure! | Our Journey to Ithaca

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