Visiting Michigan II: Petoskey, Petowsky

You write Petoskey, but when you pronounce it like that in a communal bathroom, Michiganders will be quick to correct you. “That’s not how you say it.” It doesn’t really matter. It’s an adorable little town at a big lake, and it’s worth staying the night there, so that’s what we did. on our way up to the Upper Peninsula.

Driving up to Petoskey is a treat in itself. If Holland can look like the old country a lot, Michigan looks like a country of its own. The greenery on all sides, the state troopers with their high hats, and the accent that gets thicker the more you move up north are all signs of a new part of the country. All of the above, and the time zone that really surprised us when we drove into the state for the first time (should have mentioned that last week).

Reasons to visit Michigan: comically large lights on top of State Trooper cars.

Reasons to visit Michigan: comically large lights on top of State Trooper cars.

When you reach the bay, Petoskey looks like you’d want it to look. As you drive down towards the clear blue water and pass the outskirt strip malls, a small downtown area pops up that will make every tourist’s mouth water. Walking around in town was picture perfect: small artsy shops, a comprehensible number of streets to stroll up and down, and one fancy hotel where retired old ladies sit on the porch to read a newspaper. We walked around the marina and the small pier, watched the sun set in the lake, and drank some locally brewed beer. I don’t know how to describe a better vacation day. We may have only stayed for a short while, but if you ever risk driving by, make sure you stop as well. It’s worth a detour.

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