April 18th to the 24th, 2019

I will call this week “Michigan Madness.” When I rode through this part of the country in 2014/15 I experienced the same enthusiasm and interest, it’s been fast and furious and I say that with a big smile.

2014/15

The grass is SO GREEN! This is in stark contrast to the densely forested naked trees bedded down with a thick layer of brown leaves from last year’s shedding. The grass looks fake, Fake Grass like Fake News!! Ummm

This is Ford country. My truck receives a good deal of attention. There are no trucks this age (Bill’s Old Blue Truck is 50 years old). Here in Michigan, they all have rusted back into the earth.

Deveraux Memorial Library Grayling, Michigan

I can’t help but think that in 1969 this old Ford rolled off the assembly line in Detroit, destined for Whitefish, Montana, where my friend Bill Griffin purchased it new at DePratu Ford dealership.

The only reason I am driving this truck is because Burton Robson who lives in Portland, Michigan, told me, “That’s a good truck, it will make it, you keep that truck.” I lamented not having a better vehicle for the book tour. Now here I am nearing the end of my travels with this old trusty truck and not one, not one problem has presented itself! I tell it repeatedly, “You are a champion,” and pat the dashboard.

Last Saturday I spoke at the Portland District Library, Portland, Michigan, to a full room–many of whom were the Robson Clan. I had a lovely sunny afternoon with Sharon and Burton’s family on Easter. Watching an exhausting kite flying exhibition from a grandson brought back memories of those little kites we purchased for 99 cents with a match stick (balsa wood?) like frame and tissue paper thin structure. The kite hardly held up in the wind before coming crashing down, breaking to bits!

The Robson Clan. I met Burton Robson (beard in back) on my 2015 ride. He’s been my main contact for MIchigan providing me with a car to drive, a mechanic to look at my precious truck and a stable to safely board my beloved horses while I run a muck in Michigan.
Easter Dinner with Burton, his wife Sharon, and their daughter’s family in Portland, Michigan.

I also drove south for talks in LaPorte, Indiana, at the La Porte County Public Library where I spoke at another well-attended gathering. Susan Bannwart, Adult Services at the library, introduced me–herself being a horsewoman.

The next day I drove to Swanton, Ohio, where I spoke at the restored Beach Ridge Wheelhouse, Oak Openings Preserve Metropark. This was hosted by Debbie Disbrow, owner of RAMM Horse Fencing & Stalls, https://www.rammfence.com/. Now I have to laugh because I thought all this time I would drive up to a feed store that sold fencing. Instead, I drove up to a complex of buildings that manufactures and distributes fencing from which many of you who are horse people have purchased fencing. The Divine Equine Stables where my horses are stabled have RAMM stalls!

Bernice and Debbie Disbrow, Host and President & CEO, RAMM Horse Fencing & Stalls.
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Mikey Disbrow and Bernice.

I think I can now honestly say how it feels to be a celebrity because these women went all out in cutting a huge slice of hospitality for me!! My goodness and such a turnout!! The entire event was as they say, OVER THE TOP. Thank you!!

Last night I spoke in Hesperia, Michigan. Hosted by Chris Hubbard, an avid horsewoman and packer who has put many miles in riding Michigan over the past years. We had a good showing at the library and then I had a good rest in her renovated living-quarters horse trailer before heading north for Traverse City, Michigan.

Traverse City is a beautiful, innovative, charming historic town located on West Grand Traverse Bay. From the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lake shore to the vibrant downtown with cultural diversity, arts & fine dining, Traverse City is a place I must return to for a longer visit. It’s the Cherry Capital of the World!

Staff at Grayling Public Library, we had a nice afternoon turnout. Thankyou!

The horses are safe and sound at Divine Equine Stables eight miles north of Portland, Michigan. The owners are Denise and Roger Arnesen. Although not quite ready for boarders, Denise and Roger have accommodated my two girls. The dairy farm they are renovating into a boarding stable once belonged to her father. I simply can not thank them enough as I feel the horses are far better off safely tucked away at Divine Equine Stables than with me on this very busy last leg of the book tour. I truly miss them already!!

Weather is on and off again, Spring rains mixed with warm sunny days. This week I have talks everyday. Sunday I leave for New York for three weeks. I end the book tour on May 22. Nearly done. More later.

Bernice

I call this week Michigan Madness because when I rode through this part of the country in 2014/15 I experienced the same enthusiasm and interest, its been fast and furious and I say that with a big smile.