Monday, September 07, 2009
We wanted to avoid the Labor Day scramble home, so stayed a second day in Petoskey. Slept late, had a bite to eat, then biked to the ranger station to extend our stay. Lynne went to try out the showers, and managed to eake out some warm water. After yesterday’s cold, her plumbing luck still leaves a lot to be desired. My showers on both days were so hot, I had to turn down the temperature.
We saw a Scarborough fish and chips shop advertised in the campground map that claimed to be open seven days, so we biked on over. Would it be a story if the handwritten sign in the window didn’t notify all its would-be customers that they are closed on Labor Day? So we hit the deli next door and made do, including cookies for dinner’s desert. We rode back to Morty, and I headed back out on the bike to the airport to see the great “get out of Dodge” exodus.
My instincts were right on. All but one of the big planes, and most of the lighter ones, were getting ready for the arrival of their VIP passengers. I rode back and forth on the path along the runway and had a great time second-guessing all the preparations. This is one of those rare airports that have not yet put up massive security around the perimeter. In fact some folks were riding their bikes on the taxi ways, and in and around the $20 million planes. Something tells me that these days will soon be over.
I rode up to a pilot who was killing time sitting on a picnic table. He told me that the plane I thought was a Gulfstream was in fact a Bombadier Challenger 300. So I guess there were no super mega stars here after all. It sure was one sweet flyer though. Every time I thought there was a lull in the action, another crew showed up and began more activity. So it was that I would spend nearly two and a half hours just riding up and down the path fantasizing what it would be like to be going up today. Then a chap shows up and pulls his gyro-copter out of a trailer and fires up the little snowmobile engine and he takes off, right behind the jet of the pilot I was talking to earlier. This gyro-copter was so small, it held only the pilot, and provided only a nose and windshield and rudder. – no doors, body, or wings. I was expecting this to give new meaning to the term “wake turbulence” but he got her up in a shorter distance than the jet required. So by the book, that was sufficient to avoid the problem. Still, if it were me, I would have given it a few more minutes.
Lynne has a plan for tomorrow to allow us a stop at Scarborough’s for fish and chips. We will leave later and travel less. Accordingly, I picked Wilderness State Park at the very tip of the LP – only 30 miles.