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I’m So Bad, I Vacation In Detroit


I once saw the title of this post printed on a T-shirt. It was being worn by someone who has probably never ventured beyond the borders of California, but I appreciated the sentiment. Fact is, I’m here in the Detroit ‘burbs now, and it’s actually for a real vacation. For a change, I did not even bring a computer and I’m not intending to do any work, unless some cataclysmic emergency should arise. Sometimes it’s nice to unplug and freewheel it for a while.

We arrived last night, and after meeting up with my parents (whose beautiful new condo is our temporary home away from home), we started settling in. Our son Connor, it has to be said, was an absolute angel the entire way here. TSA checkpoints, long waits, changes in air pressure, plane rides, car rides…none of it seemed to faze him. As I overheard my mom remarking earlier today, “I don’t think Connor’s real.” Maybe he’ll be a hellion when he’s a teenager, but right now he’s perfect.

Today was our first full day here, and after a meet-and-greet between Connor and his great grandmother, we went out to downtown Northville and had lunch on the tree-lined patio of a local tavern. Northville is a quaint and old-fashioned sort of downtown, lined with independent stores offering everything from second-hand baby clothes to fresh baked bread, driven up and down almost exclusively by American cars including the occasional classic Corvette, Torino or Camaro. Life, just as I remember it.


Later, I sat out on the patio and enjoyed the cool, 65-degree weather while Connor napped. It’s so quiet in my parents’ new neighborhood that you can hear crickets chirping even during the day.

My parents picked us up from Detroit Metro Airport last night in my dad’s new Charger, which was the first time I’d seen it in person. It reminds me again of how much I like Dodge products lately. Already I find myself trying to find a way to make a car like this work for our family, although with Connor here we really want something roomy and with lots of cargo space. I am just not a truck person or an SUV person at all. (And nothing quite beats the sound of a Hemi V8 under acceleration…)

Tonight we’re headed out to our favorite Japanese noodle shop in Novi, followed by a Japanese supermarket to pick up some ingredients for Connor’s meals this week. Vacationing in a familiar place like this town where I grew up, which I visit infrequently enough to make it seem new every time, is really a good way to unwind. Sometimes when I travel to unfamiliar places, the stress overrides the relaxation I’m supposed to be getting. At least that will likely not be a problem with this trip!