Dare to Dream - Detroit

Trip Start Sep 07, 2008
Trip End Dec 10, 2008

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Where I stayed
Harbortown RV Resort

Flag of United States  , Michigan
Monday, October 27, 2008

We had a plan this morning .....   let's just 'pop in' and see the HENRY FORD MUSEUM ....., with a look around Detroit, before heading up to Toronto, Canada.

Well, we completely and utterly underestimated the enormity and 'weight' of this incredible museum.  From the minute we walked into it, with it's white pillars, and its dangling chandeliers, encased in the red brick, original exterior (built in 1929), we knew we were in for something special.   We entered the immaculate open space of highly polished floors into another lifetime....
One of things that really stood out in this particular Museum, was how much of the exhibits were the real thing, as opposed to replicas.  For example, on site, were the actual presidents cars, from Roosevelt, to Thurman (who had a bubble car) to Kennedy - yes! to see within arms length, the actual car that he was assinated in, was .... sad I think.  I don't really know the words to describe that.    We also got to sit in the same bus, in the same seat, that the now infamous ROSA PARKS sat in - (the young black girl that was arrested for not giving up her seat to the white man). 

That really epitomised what this whole museum is all about ......  the people that are instrumental in changing the face of the world.

There was a whole section on the inspirational presidents (the actual chair in which Abraham Lincoln was sitting when he was assinated), another section on the 100 years of automobile, and seeing what they used for motorhomes/rv's back in the 1930/40's and so on.. and on... was funny, fascinating, enlightening, educational, and real enterntainment.  A section for trains, for homes, for furniture, for aeroplanes and so on ...    We also got to see 'makeshift' teenage bedrooms of the various eras (mine was unfortunately the 80's - scary), some TV sets dating back across the years, including the TV guides - (bring on Bonanza, The Monkeys),  and also the original costumes of the various TV stars/heros, eg: Spok in Star Wars, Dart Vader etc.  

I will quote to you from the 'blurb' about the museum, as I think it sums it up best:  " ...a vast building that's home to everything .... Rosa Parks who sparked a nation's social conscience ... a rare reproduction of the Declaration of Independence to a classic 1946 diner.     But Henry Ford wasn't just collecting artifacts.  He was collecting the ideas that gave birth to them.  He was determined that his museum would pay tribute to American innovation and chronicle the tales of people whose VISION and BOLDNESS changed the world around them.   

All I can say, is that we, everyone of us, had the most amazing time, and we are  truly blessed to have the opportunity to be inspired in this way ... and when we walked out 3 hours later, we still hadn't seen it all.  

Apart from this substantial museum, was the acres, and acres AND ACRES, of land, buildings and factories dedicated solely to the automative industry.  Testing stations, racetracks, assembly plants, research facilities and on and on and on and on.  Automative city, in every sense of the word - incredible. 

You might think after that, what else is there to see??   But Detroit for me, has two entities - cars & music.  So, no option, we had to stop in Motown.  Conjure up in your mind - black America - because this is, what it is - and it was awesome to be part of, if only for a short while.  Yeah, it's different, it's scary, but this is the birth place of a lot of famous recording artists today.  This is their soul. These little non descript houses, that were the recording studios of people like Smokey Robinson.   

You drive through these streets, and you can almost hear the music and feel the history of the generations gone by - the houses would not have changed in 50+ years., of course the buildings are new and flashy (see GM headquarters photo).     We travelled through the city on a Sunday, and so it was quiet in many ways, but the sights we saw were typical - a black man walking down the street singing to himself with his tie on and his bible under his arm, the young man coming out of church, dressed up, lighting up a cigarette hoping into his old cadillac, the pastor with a grey beard and dreadlocks -   the young gang, with bandanas sits on the side of the road,  (you don't mess with these boys they 'play' with guns), the derelict buildings strewn with grafitti.  The scene is real.  The streets named after the Ford family, and stars.

Out of Detroit, through Customs - we went in the wrong lane, but that's another whole story - and into Toronto.
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