First up, some follow-up info on yesterday’s visit to Mackinac Island.
Since there are no private motor vehicles allowed on the island, horses (and bikes) are everywhere, and their by-products, of course.
According to our carriage tour guide, there are about 550 horses on the island at any one time. Contrast this with there being only about 500 full-time residents. Another interesting fact is that for those 500 residents, there is only one doctor. But the 550 horses had THREE veterinarians. Shows you who’s the most important there.
Plus the fact that the horses don’t even have to spend the winter on the island. At the end of the season they all get a ferry ride to the mainland and then spend the winter on a 2000 acre horse farm up near Pickford, MI, which is about half way between St. Ignace and Sault Ste. Marie. Must be nice.
Due to the Lake Snow Effect, supposedly Mackinac Island gets about 40 feet of snow a season. Seems like a lot. I guess I wouldn’t want to spend the winter there either.
They have three main breeds of horses: Percherons, Belgians, and a Percheron/Belgain cross, called a Bay. In the photo below, the two black horses are Percherons, and the brown one is a Bay.
Someone asked our tour guide why they don’t use Clydesdale’s. Our guide said that Clydesdales are really show horses, and their ankles are really too weak to work as real draft horses, and said it would take 4 or more Clydesdales to pull the same weight as two Percherons.
She then said “That’s why they use them to haul “light’ beer.
We woke up this morning to heavily-overcast skies and the promise of later rain.
Sure glad we didn’t wait until today to visit Mackinaw Island.
About 3pm Jan and I headed out for Wal-Mart and dinner at China Cate, the Chinese restaurant we ate at last Saturday, right after we got here.
It started a light rain as we left the rig, but while we were in Wal-Mart the bottom fell out. We could hear the rain coming down heavy on the roof. And then my pocket started going “BEEEEEP BEEEEEP BEEEEEP BEEEEEP!”
And then I could hear other alarms faintly all around me.
Turns out it was a weather alert coming in on everyone’s phone. A tornado had been spotted somewhere west of us, over around Newberry, and was supposedly headed our way. All during this the rain just came down harder. It had slacked off somewhat by the time we had finished at Wal-Mart, but we still had to make a run to the truck.
We were sure glad to get some of that Hot & Sour Soup into us. And as before our meal was really good, approaching that of our fabled King Food back home.
By the time we got home the rain had pretty much slacked off, hopefully for the rest of the night. Otherwise we may have trouble getting out of here tomorrow.
We’re parked on grass and headed downhill so we’ll have to back out of here. We’ll see how it goes.
Tomorrow we’re heading south about 220 miles to spend one night at the Little Rivers Casino near Manistee, MI, before heading on to Elkhart, IN on Sunday.
Thought for the Day:
Gun Registration is just gun confiscation in slow motion.
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