Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Say ya to da UP, eh?

This is coming to you from Copper Harbor, MI - the northernmost town in Michigan, at the north of the Keweenaw Peninsula in the Upper Peninsula. According to Wikipedia, the town has about 75 year-round residents, the rest being seasonal.

I've never believed in having bumper stickers, but I have one now. It carries the slogan of the UP - "Say ya to da UP, eh?"

We set off on last Thursday late afternoon, originally intending to stay no more than 5, maximum 7 days. We'll be back in Ann Arbor on Friday. Unfortunately.

If I had my way, I'd just move up here. Screw ambition, screw living the wild crazy jet-setting life. Here there's real tranquility. And pasties. And fish. And trees. Lots and lots of trees.

The UP is the perfect vacation destination. The people are friendly and honest, the crime rates are minimal, the scenery is spectacular, and there are tons of hiking, water sports and historical sites to enjoy. Oh, and did I mention that the food is superlative? I've eaten some pies that made me reconsider the entire fundamental nature of pie.

Sometimes you find a spot on this planet that suits you perfectly. The kind of place you never want to leave. The UP is that sort of a spot. I thought I'd miss the mountains here - but in copper country there are rolling hills that act as decent substitutes. In fact, the UP is pretty near perfect.

Imagine swimming on a beach where all around you in the distance you see pine trees, and where the waters of Lake Superior are so clear that you can see the bottom with ease, and where the bottom is made of sand rather than rocks. So the water's a tiny bit cold - but that's good for cellulite apparently.

I could see myself living in a cabin in the woods here. If you know me you might laugh - but here's a few good reasons why I could do it, and enjoy it:

1) High speed internet - it's EVERYWHERE!!! Even here, in the northernmost town. This is the main thing I'd need to enjoy life up here.
2) I adore snow with a sick passion. There's more snow here than in many places north of the UP.
3) I'd physically fit right in with the assortment of broadly built, blonde, blue-eyed Scandinavians inhabiting this part of the world.
4) My cat would explode with delight - the birds and wildlife would keep her amused for hours.
5) In today's increasingly fucked up world, this place is a haven - for the first time in months I feel relaxed and unconcerned about the future of mankind. If global war erupts, I can't imagine it affecting the UP too much.
6) Pasties. I could eat them every day. Seriously. Deep down inside, I'm a meat and potatoes kind of gal.
7) I grew up in rural areas in Switzerland - places like this are where I feel most like myself.

So maybe I'll take the Michigan bar exam and try to find myself a little niche up here somewhere. It would be sort of nice to be happy and unstressed. And who knows, I might even live to be really really old.


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