Day 60, 61 & 62: Schwaigers, Dem & Rep in OH & MI

Trip Start Jul 01, 2008
Trip End Sep 27, 2008

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Where I stayed
Monroe/Petersburg KOA

Flag of United States  , Michigan
Monday, September 1, 2008

Heading west feels good! Life on the road has crept up past the 60 day mark and the rhythm of arriving, unpacking, sightseeing and putting kids to bed, although now a well-oiled routine, needed an injection of something new. So we decided rather than explore the mitten of Michigan as planned, we would just find a campground and stay put for a couple of days, swimming, fishing and reading. We were limited to one campground in Michigan, nowhere near either shore (of Lake Michigan or Lake Huron), or even up top on Mackinac Island, but then we did leave it until the day before the Labor Day weekend to make this decision, so we accepted a spot just outside Detroit.
Heading through NY, Pennsylvania, and Ohio states we encountered some drizzle, and realized that we'd have to skip dinner in order to get the tent up in the last of the light, so we opted for a cheapy hotel in Toledo. It was also an opportunity to watch the last night of the Democratic convention and watch Obama make his historic acceptance speech. Our visit to Washington DC ignited an interest, at last, in the forthcoming election and we were amused to find the same places we found ourselves in, are the very same places both Obama & McCain are currently visiting on the campaign trail. We could have popped over to Dayton to watch McCain announce his running mate, we could have joined Obama at his BBQ in Monroe, or if we were really feeling enthused we could  have lined up outside the Toledo library for a glimpse of Obama/Biden exiting after a private lunch. But we didn't.
Rather than going straight to the campground, we headed to the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, just outside Detroit, which was far more interesting than we expected. The cars were okay, we saw another model of the Wright Brothers plane, but unexpectedly we got to see the vehicle JFK was travelling in when he was assassinated, the chair Abraham Lincoln was sitting in when he was assassinated at the theater, and much to Aviva's delight, we got to sit on the very seat in the bus that Rosa Parks refused to give up in Alabama. Very cool.
We set off for a quick drive thru of Detroit; Matt has been curious about the city ever since he read in Lonely Planet that this city "quite frankly, looks like it has had the shit kicked out it". I really wasn't so curious, but agreed all the same, so we made sure we had an exact address plugged into the GPS before heading to the freeway. Greatest relief of the trip, for me, was finding the freeway was partly closed for roadworks, it was nearly 5pm on a Friday and the bumper-to-bumper traffic was slowing to a crawl. So we exited and got the only glimpse of the city I needed in our circuitous route back to the freeway.
So, as it turned out we only had the one day to relax at the campground, but it was a day of unadulterated kid fun. This KOA had a Waterslide, swimming lake, a catch & release fishing pond, playgrounds, and we gave the kids slush-puppies for lunch (their favourite activity of the day). Daniel hasn't lost his enthusiasm for fishing, despite Matt being convinced there were no fish in either of the last two lakes they've cast out in. He had Matt up very early one morning, reminding him that today was live-worm day, so they headed out together for a lesson in threading a worm on a hook. Aviva didn't think that was something she needed to learn. Best part of this stop for Matt & I ... the car stayed motionless, which was just what was needed. 
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