Good morning, dear readers. Would you like to join me on a visit to a good friend’s house last Thursday?
Catherine and I planned to travel to Houghton for lunch, recycling, shopping at the co-op. But the wind blew sideways in the Keweenaw, so I offered instead to stop at the Nite Owl cafe and pick up two grilled chicken salads and deliver them to her farmhouse up in the hills of Herman.
She liked the idea.
I paused first next to the Keweenaw Bay and watched Lake Superior freezing.
Snow and sand swirled.
It was 3 degrees (-16 Celsius) and icy-cold.
Up, up, up you drive to Herman, another old Finnish farming settlement.
You drive slowly around curves, creeping, careful. A few years ago I did the Artist’s Way with Catherine and two other friends. One of them rounded a curve too fast and ended up deep in a snow bank.
Lesson learned. Creep around those curves.
I always pause and admire Catherine’s old barn. Old barns in Michigan are falling down as the earth reclaims them. Her barn still looks noble with its rounded roof and remnants of red stain.
Herman always has more snow than L’Anse, because it sits atop a large hill overlooking the surrounding countryside. Telephone towers jut ominously across its peak.
I love Catherine’s house and land. Once, years ago, I did a two or three-day Vision Quest here, sitting on the land, fasting, praying.
It is a sacred place.
Treasures abound within her house. Shall I show you some?
Her back windows overlook an old apple orchard. Some years we’ve baked apple crisp and simmered applesauce with apples from these trees.
We ate our chicken salads, talking, talking. We needed to catch up. It’s been far too long since we got together. Last autumn? Was it last summer? Far too long, anyway.
My eyes kept noticing beauty.
“I have to get my camera,” I said. (It waited patiently in the freezing car.)
When I started snapping photos, I couldn’t quit.
Catherine knows how to tango, can you imagine?
I cannot tango, but I could take photos of dancers.
“Can I take your picture, Catherine?” I asked.
She shook her head.
She was not prepared.
There are photos of her elsewhere in my blog. If you want to click on almost 550 blog entries (oh and go back and look at the 365 entries on Opening the door, Walking Outside) you’ll find her, I am sure.
We finished our lunch. We vowed to get together more often. Honest, we will. We won’t wait six months next time.
Maybe next time we’ll traipse outside in the fields or woods, or maybe hike to the beaver pond.
Remember Friday’s blog? Here is another view of that plant from inside the window. OK, it wasn’t really an impossibility. **grin**
But it was fun to imagine, wasn’t it?
What a wonderful friend! I can tell just by looking at the objects that occupy her space. I love the vase, stones, and sweet grass–especially the pussy willows!
Have a terrific trip, my friend–and stay safe!
You would like Catherine very much, Kathy. I am really, really, really, really hoping it doesn’t snow too much or get to windy and the plane goes up in the air and lands safely, yes ma’am. Thank you!
Kathy-the-trickster! Very cute with the green leaves and white snow. Thank you for the peek at your visit!
Did I fool you big time, Karma? Glad to oblige! I didn’t know whether to post the pics of my visit but decided what the heck, photos are for sharing, aren’t they?
Catherine’s barn is elegant, without a touch of the supercilious. The shape of the roof seems to guarantee that it will stand forever. Good architecture for northern Michigan!
It is a magnificent barn, indeed, Pamela. She has worked keeping it repaired with a roofing repair last summer. It was architecturally well designed.
A lovey visit was had by all, you, Catherine, and now us! Thanks for taking us along!
Glad you enjoyed, Dawn. Come again! 😉
As always a sweet adventure with you Kathy, and thank you Catherine for sharing your home and object to be photographed for all to enjoy!
Catherine is very kind. But now I’m wondering–did I ask her? Or did I just start taking photos. Yep, I’ll bet I just started taking photos… Glad you enjoyed the adventure, Jeff.
A lovely way to spend some time, even if it did require traveling a slippery road.
Aren’t you glad we didn’t go in the ditch, Carol? We would have had a long walk to Catherine’s house to get help.
My new dream home is Catherine’s barn—–I LOVE IT!
I shall tell her you said so, Laurie. Thank you!
That road looks totally treacherous ! Solid ice, by the look of it. But with what awaited you at the end of your trip, worth the risk. I like your friend. I like her stuff. I like her friend Kathy too.
I love that barn. I want to walk over and just lay my hand on its old boards. Wish it could talk to me.
Thanks for letting me tag along. Can I have another cup of tea please.
Oh we did drink tea, too, Sybil. I forgot to tell about that. She offered me a choice of teas and I chose a purple-colored green tea that tasted fabulous. Never sipped it before. Would you like the same kind? Then you can go lay your hands on the barn.
I love everything about this blog … the descriptions and the incredible photos! Sigh … thank you so much. I feel wrapped in wonder and a sense of cozy-ness. Stay warm, and safe, Love.
Really? I wondered whether to show these photos or not (oh you probably know that because you’re a comment reader, bless your heart!) Catherine’s house, which you might want to visit someday, feels warm and cozy. I really really really do not want it to snow and get windy tomorrow. Can you arrange for that, dear friend? And thanks for your well wishes.
You are so kind to bring us along on your visits, Kathy! Mwah!
I am glad you enjoyed, Nicole! Hope you are having a lovely weekend.
I do love that barn. Though it would have been nice to have a picture of your friend included, I “saw her” through the objects in her home. Thanks for sharing!
I’m tempted to find a photo of her and post it tomorrow, Kath. Depends on how much time I have…getting ready to fly south soon. Glad you liked this.
I agree: the barn is cool.
Glad you like it, Cardinal! You don’t see many like it any more around here.
Marty and I are now officially pining over Catherine’s barn. It is absolutely gorgeous!
Her property definitely has a sacred feeling to it, even over internet ether via digital photographs. Thank you for sharing your visit– I might just make a cup of tea now and picture my fabulous life living in that old barn. 🙂
Oh I am glad you and Marty enjoyed it, Dana! Once my son slept in that barn with a couple of his friends. He was in junior high then, maybe. I am also glad you sensed the sacred feel of her place. What kind of tea did you make?
Oh, just my morning staple: fresh ginger, fresh lemon, and a dash of cayenne pepper. YUM! 🙂
Dear Kathy…thank you so much for allowing us to tag along on your visit with your special friend Catherine ♥ The road to her house looked terribly icy so I am very grateful you made it safely! I love Catherine’s barn! What a beautiful building in a beautiful setting. Makes me think of times gone past. Her home feels sacred and spiritual…peaceful. I felt myself taking deep, cleansing breaths as I read your descriptions and looked at the pictures. I love love love the purple glass ball, the small offerings and especially the pottery by Ed Gray ♥ And now I see the green plant against the window looking out onto the shadowy snow. 🙂 I’m so happy you had such a nice visit with your friend and that she was able to spend time with her dear friend. Our friends are our treasures ♥
Have a safe and very very fun trip…I think you’re leaving soon right? Take loads of pictures but most of all…enjoy your time there!
Godspeed my dear friend of the northwoods ♥
Brenda, your enthusiasm is so lovely! It is because I know people like you enjoy this that I decide to share. Your presence is such a gift! Aren’t our friends treasures? Isn’t it special when you have a friend you haven’t seen for months and you start right up with your conversation as if you saw her yesterday? Those friendships are precious.
Thank You, Thank You, Thank You !!!!! What a wonderful surprise ! Taking Herman Road all the way through to Nestoria is a favorite drive. Someday (summer day that is) I want to take Celotex Road off of Herman to the McCormick Tract Wilderness area. I truly hope that your day is going as good as you have made mine. Have a safe trip home.
Why, John, I knew you might like the picture looking up toward your neighborhood, but I never thought that the Herman connection would appeal to you as well. It is wonderful driving all those backroads. (I am not really going home. I am going to Florida where my parents have a winter home, followed by a trip to a Mysterious Location. IF I get out of the U.P.!!)
For some reason I thought you were already there when you posted
Wouldn’t that have been heavenly?
Such beautiful depictions of winter. Wonderful color!
Marcie, I always smile to see you here. And I am always honored when you say nice things about my photos. 🙂
OOOOooooh! That barn is lovely! Have we seen it before? Your roads look a lot like ours. Or how ours looked before some melting today. Is the lake freezing for Barry?
Glad you got to catch up with a friend. We always have so much catching up to do because we’ve moved so much and left friends in each place.
You are VERY astute, Heather! You HAVE seen that barn before! I think I posted it rather recently, as a matter of fact. The lake may be freezing slowly, but it’s not frozen yet. He despairs. The inland lakes are frozen. Thank you for the safe travel wishes. I need them. Desperately.
looks like a fun day… glad you dumped recycling and did a little shooting in the middle of winter
It was good to play, wasn’t it, wolfrosebud? And I can recycle today in the snowstorm instead!
I was always going to love that barn. Bet Civil War veterans helped build it, or their kids did. All that to look at and chicken sandwiches too. Life is good.
Isn’t life good, Gerry? Aren’t we lucky to see barns like this still existing?
I cannot think of one new comment to say to add to the others….except, being the last and knowing none of the others,…
THE BARN IS MINE….HANDS OFF…..shouting!!!!
Ha! You are funny, Linda! I’ll tell Catherine the barn is yours. Will see what she says! 🙂
I’d have spent time photographing as much as you did, Kathy. Lovely pics… lovely things to photograph, to see. 🙂
I know you would have, Val. Glad you enjoyed the photos!
LOVE the barn! and all the photos that show us who Catherine is. I think I would like her very much. Thanks for letting us tag along on your visit.
Cecelia, I am glad you enjoyed the trip to Catherine’s house. You would have enjoyed sipping tea with us.
It’s always so nice, getting together with an old friend, isn’t it? You’ve captured her home beautifully… and that barn!!! Gorgeous!
I’m sure I don’t have to tell you how much I’ve enjoyed seeing the snow in your pictures 😉
Hi Michaela, it’s been good to have enough snow to photograph. (Not that I’m anywhere near snow now!) Glad you like Catherine’s place. It was lovely to visit with her again.