pictures, and pictured rocks.

i’ve spent the first 2 months of summer doing a little bit of everything, in the best way. i’ve have a few mini-roadtrips to see friends, discovered an impressive cookbook collection at the library, i’ve done a little running and a lot of swimming, and i finally watched roman holiday.

but some things have been not fun, an example of this would be trying to restore my photo library on my macbook after a few rookie iOS moves by me. blah.

i’ll spare you the gory details and skip to the ending where today, while deep in an online forum, i made the miraculous recovery of 4,349 images to my internal hard drive. 

and let out one massive exhale. 

and so it’s ironic that today, i’m going to share the only photos that weren’t lost in the crash. because they were taken while my computer was in limbo. 

it’s also feeling like the right time to share this post because tomorrow is the beginning of a huge trip out west for me, and so it feels somewhat ceremonious that i touch on the last summer adventure. 

back in the middle of june, somewhat on a whim and completely unprepared, my parents and i drove up to the upper peninsula of michigan for a week unplugged. 

pictured rocks, the area we visited, is only about 3.5 hours from our house so this was by no means a monumental excursion. but the last time we camped as a family i was wearing a pink pocahontas sweatsuit. which means it had to be AT LEAST 2 years ago.

the pictured rocks national lakeshore was unbelievable, through-and-through. i was amazed at the size of the cliffs, for both their towering heights and how far they went to become lost to the horizon. the colors of the mineral-streaked rocks and caribbean-esqe waters of lake superior (yeah, lake superior!!!). 

i was amazed at how untouched everything felt. the weather was beyond pleasant for june, and yet we were greeted by no crowds. the campground was full, but quiet. we drove up on two-lane highways, winding through small towns and state forests. it felt like we could never have ended up in a place like we did. 

and that was the most amazing part of all, right? that it was right there. hardly across a state line. just as far from my home as the drive i make to minneapolis without thinking twice. 

i’m not sure why i get to stuck on thinking that the most beautiful places i’ve ever been can’t be right outside my back door, that to see something unbelievable i would have to get on a plane or pay a ton of money or dream my whole life about it. 

which doesn’t exactly go with me driving out west thursday, or maybe it does. that there is something very uncomplicated about getting in the car, with a map, and without expectations. to visit national parks, yes, but also to feel as inspired at so many more points along the road. to be surprised. to get away. 

and i promise i won’t be such a stranger as the adventure unfolds. and to drive safely. and i double promise to back up all of my photos.